1st African American-Built Reactor
My objective is to build a nuclear reactor in my home that I can use to advocate clean energy use for my community and nation. I have already made immense progress on this, but I hit a roadblock because I need a few more materials to completely finish my reactor.
Nuclear energy shows great promise to drastically reduce our greenhouse emissions and I want to be able demonstrate the potential of this energy in our society and encourage investment into energy sustainability. We only have one Earth and I strongly believe it is important that we maintain it for all future generations as best as we can.
Who Am I
My name is Steven Udotong and I am a junior at Cinnaminson High School in small suburban New Jersey town.
Last summer I was accepted into the Yale Young Global Scholars Program where I worked in an engineering workshop in Singapore.
Who Am I (continued)
I’m one of five boys from a first generation Nigerian-American with a single mother. My older brothers attend Harvard, MIT, and Princeton.
I decided to take initiative to build my own nuclear reactor, showing this energy is not scary, and is more accessible than people believe. Hopefully, I can encourage others to continue taking steps towards taking more active political and economic positions to invest in energy sustainability.
Thank you for your support!
I have recently made significant progress in the construction of my fusor system. I managed to secure just about all the parts required for this project including a vacuum gauge and deuterium gas both were really blocking me for a large amount of time as it was very hard to find these components for the right price.
The attached diagram shows are the major parts I have collected and completed most of the assembly including hole drilling, welding, and fixing the inner grid with the help of some professionals. It gives an image of how everything is linked together. The color green was what I was used to signify that I have secured the part and the number+letter combination correspond with my spreadsheet for all the materials in the project.
I have another picture of the setup attached but I will be further working on connecting everything together properly and have better pictures to show in the very near future.
My next steps are:
1) Conduct the vacuum test now that I have the proper vacuum gauge and pull proper pressure for inside the spherical chamber.
2) Conduct the plasma test and submit results. (observe a purple glow that indicates my voltage and pressure in the chamber create an environment for fusion to take place).
3) Get approval of setup from a member of the fusor.net site in New Jersey and conduct the Neutron Test (proof that nuclear fusion is happening when a proton + deuterium = energy + a neutron) and submit my entry for the Neutron club.
I have learned so much, in this process and look forward to continued growth and experimentation as I am concluding.
Thanks so much for believing in me and exceeding the funding goal with your support. Every penny counted and it turned out I went over my original budget and even the donated amount due to higher costs of materials than I initially imagined.
Every dollar donated has been used for this project and it means so much that so many people that know me and even don't know me have helped me achieve something that started off as a dream.
I've learned a lot about negotiation and the online sales process. I've been making a lot of calls and inquiries to ensure I purchase the right parts at the cheapest price possible.
As you can see in the pictures, I've started connecting a lot of parts. Including the chamber to the vacuum pump and the camera to monitor. I have about of 80% of parts together and need to buy mostly connectors but I'm progressing well.
Thanks for all the support, I will keep working hard and hope to make everyone proud!