There has been an increase in interest worldwide in fusion research over the last decade due to the recognition that a large number of new, environmentally attractive, sustainable energy sources will be needed to meet ever increasing demand for electrical energy. Based on a series of course notes from graduate courses in plasma physics and fusion energy at MIT, the text begins with an overview of world energy needs, current methods of energy generation, and the potential role that fusion may play in the future. It covers energy issues such as the production of fusion power, power balance, the design of a simple fusion reactor and the basic plasma physics issues faced by the developers of fusion power. This book is suitable for graduate students and researchers working in applied physics and nuclear engineering. A large number of problems accumulated over two decades of teaching are included to aid understanding.
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