Real Arc Reactor (ionized plasma generator)


Hey guys, I’m the Hacksmith and on this episode Make It Real We’re gonna try and make a real arc reactor since it’s been one of your most common requests So what exactly is an arc reactor Well, it was first introduced to the MCU in Iron Man, and just looking at it It looks like it produces a continual arc of electricity in a loop and somehow that generates power Infinite power To me. It kind of looks like a perpetual energy device which we know is impossible because the most fundamental law of physics is the conservation of energy Which states that energy in a closed system is constant, which means energy cannot be created, only transformed That simplifies into an equation energy in equals energy out plus losses Usually in the form of heat because of the second law of thermodynamics We know there are always losses always Which kind of makes sense when Obadiah says this The arc reactor. That’s a publicity stunt We built that thing to shut the hippies up It works Yeah as a science project But then in the cave when Tony miniaturized the arc reactor he uses palladium What is that? That’s palladium 0.15 grams? Which suggests the arc reactor might actually be nuclear technology since some palladium is radioactive Unfortunately, it’s also highly carcinogenic and toxic so I’m not about to play with palladium for a fictional technology Now the power output specified is also kind of ridiculous What could it generate? If my math is right? And it always is. Three gigajoules per second. Joule per second is just a fancy scientific way of saying a single watt, which means the arc reactor produces three gigawatts of power That’s almost three times the power output of a time-travelling DeLorean from Back to the Future 1.21 Jigawatts! In fact If we were to sell that energy back to the power grid the same way I sell solar energy from my roof it would be the equivalent of 833 kilowatt hours, which would generate 250 dollars per second of income or 21.6 million dollars per day basically, if I were to invent a real working arc reactor all of our funding issues would be solved and we’d be well on our way to building a real life Iron Man suit or More realistically our entire company would be assassinated by the big oil companies So it’s pretty much impossible to make a real working arc reactor. So let’s build a real working arc reactor All right Now before we build the arc reactor, let’s take a look at a 3D model using some augmented reality tech, not unlike Tony Stark himself Pretty cool, right. Let’s take a closer look Now it looks like the electricity is being generated in the final ring of the assembly But I guess the real question is if we’re building an arc reactor. How are we gonna do that? Let’s get some paper out and actually do some calculations by hand So to sustain an arc of electricity around the arc reactor we’re gonna need a lot of voltage The diameter of the arc reactor is around 75 millimeters across which gives us a circumference of around 241 millimeters Which would be the path the electricity actually has to follow now It takes approximately three million volts to ionize air for an arc to form across a distance of 1 meter That’s roughly 30,000 volts per centimeter. So with the 24.1 centimeter travel path, we’ll need approximately 723,900 volts of electricity Luckily, we have these little high voltage transformers which produce about 80,000 volts each There’s 10 segments in the arc reactor. So that would be about 800,000 volts This might actually work. Let’s start assembling it They do need to be close together so I might thicken up that divider wall. Yeah, that’d be good Smells nice. Yeah, I don’t know what that is, I think it might be acrylic but Most realistic arc reactor ever Yeah, so these wires They’re not very thick, but like if they’re next to each other they don’t arc As long as there’s something else there. So I’m wondering how thick the wires I need carrying the high voltage near my body See, perfectly safe As long as you don’t become the path of least resistance, you’ll be fine All right, now that we have most of the components assembled we’re gonna have to control them somehow I made a quick block diagram to explain how the circuits actually going to work But basically we’re gonna use a relay bank to control the outputs of each high voltage module Using an arduino. The power input is from a lithium polymer battery Now we actually have a more detailed electronics diagram which you can check out using the link in the description below to visit our project on maker.io The battery is connected to all those This powers the arduino Ready for its first test The most realistic thing about this arc reactor is the number of wires coming off of it because if it was actually producing that much electricity You’d need some serious Current carriers to get that energy some are useful All right so we’ve got the arc reactor all set up and we have a clamp meter to measure the current flowing through the wires As we do a start-up sequence 20 amps! All right, so obviously I don’t have a hole in my chest so I can’t actually wear this arc reactor So I thought it’d be nice to make a nice kind of like display case that we can use For when we’re actually powering stuff using the arc reactor All right, so we’ve got the arc reactor in its box now and we’ve actually got the switches on the box So let’s open it up All right, so main power is this switch here and we’ll try and do a startup sequence Alright let’s see if it can power a phone All right, let’s see what else this can power All right, so we’re here at the main circuit breaker for my house and we’re gonna plug in the arc reactor All right, let’s turn it on and see what happens All right, so these are the power meters for the house and as you can see that’s how many kilowatt hours we’re using All right, let’s reconnect it to the grid All right, so obviously it’s not actually producing enough power to do anything useful But it certainly looks cool and sounds terrifying We’ll be using it for some future gags in upcoming videos where we use it to actually power our projects One of our goals here is to inspire people into STEM fields to learn and create things themselves We get tons of messages asking how we learn to do this stuff and the answer is simple. I’m a problem solver I’m not some kind of genius. I just like to learn and use those concepts to make cool stuff I learned by doing and that’s exactly what brilliant.org allows you to do Brilliant.org is a problem-solving site that helps you think like an engineer by guiding you through the problems that bring you from knowing nothing To having a deep understanding of the topic If you’d like to learn more about problem-solving and engineering so you can build stuff like this yourself And support a channel at the same time go to Brilliant.org/Hacksmith and sign up for free The first 200 people that go to that link will receive 20% off their annual premium subscription Well, thanks for watching Hacksmith Industries now has their very own arc reactor Leave a comment below to tell us what other comic book tech we should recreate Elena is not going to touch it

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