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The Australian National University

History of Australian fusion

Australia has contributed to plasma fusion research from the beginning, when Sir Mark Oliphant and Lord Rutherford discovered the fusion reaction and the heavy hydrogen isotope tritium. Initially the most successful plasma confinement device was a 'tokamak', a doughnut-shaped ring of plasma invented in Russia. Australia can claim the first tokamak in the western world, the Liley Torus. The 'rotamak', a spherical device, was invented by Professor I. Jones of Flinders University, and later at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO), produced the world's first demonstration of a spherical torus configuration. Australia has an international reputation in plasma measurement systems (diagnostics), plasma theory and Alfvén wave physics.

Updated:  30 June 2010/Responsible Officer:  H-1 Facility Manager /Page Contact:  H-1 Website Administrator