Friedwardt Winterberg’s fusion pulse driven space vehicles initiate fusion by injecting a rapid jolt of energy into the fusion target causing an implosion to high density fast enough that the fuel fuses before being blown apart. A mere 10 MJ is enough for the D-T triggered D-D pulse units to implode, but it has to be pumped into the target in a nanosecond – a power of 10 quadrillion watts (10 petawatts, 10^{16} W.) In his original papers Winterberg outlines two multi-use triggering systems – a super-Marx Generator, which is a huge linear bank of Marx generators, and a gigavolt charge build up on a space-ship in the high vacuum of space.

But what if there’s a different way? A new capacitor design theoretically has more than enough power (~10^{19} W/kg estimated) and enough energy storage (1 MJ/kg) to allow a very light weight triggering system for fusion…

Digital Quantum Batteries, summary at Next Big Future.

News at Technology Review …more details reported as only TechReview can, with the usual counterpoint view from researchers in the field.

Digital Quantum Batteries …a research paper describing the concept and preliminary designs. The system uses billions of nano-scale vacuum tubes (for want of an analogy) which can be used as information storage (thus ‘Digital’) and as power storage, via a tricky quantum effect that enhances the electric field strength far more than expected from classical electronic theory.

If this research pays off, then this is potentially a game-changer for pulsed fusion.