An End to Four Years of Prometheus Fusion Perfection

7 07 2013

I have decided to end Prometheus Fusion Perfection.

The project is too expensive for me. The Polywell requires at least $200MM to bring to fruition. I cannot hope to raise that much money.

Although I could raise smaller amounts with Kickstarter, it would not be enough to complete the project.

The blog will remain online indefinitely.

I want to thank everyone that participated in this project: Many people have donated their knowledge, time and money.

Although this project did not solve the energy crisis, it pushed the limits of  DIY science.

Personally, I learned more doing this project than any other endeavor in my life. I’ve plumbed the depths of plasma physics, electrical engineering, hardware hacking and on and on.

It saddens me to end such an amazing project.


Over the years I have gathered excellent equipement for fusion research. I want this equipment to go to fusion researchers.

I am selling most of my equipment at cost or best offer,  plus shipping. Feel free to contact me for details


Pfeiffer TSU065 Vacuum Pumping Station $3,000
Conflat Vacuum chamber (8″, 8″, 6″, 2.75″, 2.75″, 2.75″) + Stand $500
Spectra residual gas analyser + Probe $650
IGM401 Hornet™ Vacuum Gauge $900

Conflat Hardware

Conflat 6″ blank $120
Conflat 6″ with 2.75″ opening $150
Two Conflat 8″ blank $160
Conflat 8″ bellows + 3 pin high current feedthrough $268
Conflat 8″ with 2.75″ opening $200
Conflat 2.75″ 8 pin electric feedthrough $75
Conflat 2.75″ window $50
6 Conflat 2.75″ blank $100
Conflat 2.75″ with dual gas feedthrough $70
Conflat 2.75″ butterfly valve $50
Conflat 2.75″ high voltage feedthrough $251
Conflat 2.75″ bellows $124
Conflat 2.75″ Tee $128
Conflat 2.75″ Tee $128
Perkin Elmer Right Angle Vacuum Valve, 2 3/4″ ConFlat $78

Power Supplies

48 X (1800 uF, 450V) capacitor bank $631
Glassman 10mA 30kV power supply $229
Glassman 3mA 10kV power supply $175
Sorensen 10V 150A power supply $100
Custom electron gun power supply $200
Custom coil power supply 2.3kA current pulse $300
900MHz 300 Watt Linear Power Amplifier MRF897/MRF899 $35
120VAC Variac $50
Two trigatrons $80
2 low volt power supplies $50

Gas Flow

Gas flow interconnects $100
20 SCCM SEC 4400 Mass flow controller $88
Lecture bottle of Deuterium (partially used, LOCAL PICKUP ONLY: BROOKLYN NY) $115


2 COHERENT 60W infra-red bar lasers $300
Laser Specs OD 6+ @ 690-1300 nm, OD13 @808nm $250

Oscilloscope (preferably sold together)

Tektronix oscilloscope front cover protective cap $78
Two TEKTRONIX TEK P6109 150MHz/10Mohm/11.8pF/10X/1.5M Probes $35


National Instruments NY USB 6008 $101
Eberline E-520 Geiger Radiation Counter & HP-260 Probe $233
Sparkfun USB geiger Counter $150
Stethoscope $10


YBCO superconducting test cable $1,000
Pope Vacuum Dewar Bottle Flask 3500m $150
Union Carbide large Dewar, with Ladel $350


Large Whiteboard $100
Ceramic Saw $30
Magnet Wire $10
6″ Absolute Digimatic Digital Calipers CD 6″ CSX 500-196-20 $51
Electron Beam EB Welder Hairpin Filaments HSD Leybold S-32 R-40 0.012″ 12Mil $13
Snap-On 3/8″ Socket Wrench 7-1/2″ F720A $25
Canon Powershot $52
Overhead Opaque projector $25
Large Spool of Shielded microphone cable $100
5 Supercapacitors $133
Windows PC + Monitor $30
Large torus Neodynimum magnet
Misc ceramics $50
Grounding strap $100
Arduino + Breakout board $50
Large Dewar Holder $30
Science Fair Electronics Kit $12
Flight Case rack $50
Remote emergency shutdown $20




17 responses

7 07 2013

So sorry to hear this :(

7 07 2013

What a shame. I thought this might be coming after the lull in updates… You’re right that you’ve pushed the boundaries. I’m sure you’ve inspired others, and at least you’ve learned some lessons for yourself. All the best in your future endeavours!

7 07 2013

Sorry mate have followed you through Reprap.. good luck in future endevers

8 07 2013

sad to see you stop, but the best of luck in the future!
was looking for HV power supply but I see those are already gone.
besides shipping would probably be a lot!

8 07 2013

I’m not surprised to see you giving up on fusion: it was a big undertaking for one person, but you did good nonetheless. However, I will say that I am more disappointed by the fact that you’re not following up on metallic-rap. You’re already half-way there with a vacuum chamber and electron gun…

8 07 2013
tom schuring

you gave it a more than fair shot ! well done and best of luck.
i’m not sure if it will cheer you up but you out-lasted itself :)


8 07 2013

The Polywell Community is very sad to see you go. You have done a great deal for this effort. You have the passion, we have many more questions. Where is the funding?

8 07 2013

Thank you for sharing your open notebook!

8 07 2013

Sad to see this finish up, but you’ve taken a hobby and pushed it to new heights, which is always very inspiring to see wherever such passion is applied.

Hope you get the opportunities and time (and funding/money :)) to use your talents in exploring other areas of scientific interest to you; certainly have the interest and abilities, just need the right connections/opportunities.

Take care.

9 07 2013

Very sad to hear this news Mark. I have bene following your work with great interest over the past few years. You have done a great deal to bring fusion energy in general & Polywell in particular into the public eye & imagination. You should be congratulated for this. Any plans to apply for academic research positions – you must be prety well qualified for it by now & it would be a great shame to see your experience and talents not utilised in this field? Is Eric Lerner at LLP hiring? Or maybe a trip down-under to Uni Sydney? All the very best for all your future endeavours. Very best regards, Rob Cain.

9 07 2013

Yes I second Rob Cain’s comment; would be interesting to hear whether you plan to pursue any academic or even commercial research positions, in line with your interests – you should shoot some emails/CV’s to existing fusion research projects, and try to get a lead in :)

You’ve more than displayed the enthusiasm and talent for it, so I think you may have good opportunities in that direction – something that I would be interested in reading about, in future blog entries!

26 07 2013
Tom McCarthy

Hey Mark, I’ve been trying to contact you for awhile after we talked about donating. I sent you an email about a week ago but there hasn’t been a reply, hopefully if you see this could you check it out?

26 07 2013
Mark Suppes

Hey Tom,

I appreciate the support. But because the project is now finished I can’t accept further donations.

27 07 2013
Tom McCarthy

Sorry, I didn’t explain properly.
You might remember we had a quick email exchange a while back, I’m under and I was asking about a discount on some items?


12 08 2013
Isaac Yonemoto

Mark, we had lunch together a few years back. What you did has been inspiring – in no small part thanks to watching you I’ll be launching my nonprofit science research effort next year. If I’m successful, I think I’ll have a nice platform for aggregating research funding efforts. If, hypothetically, down the line we could raise the 200-odd million for polywell research (or maybe less for a slightly less ambitious version), would you be interested in leading the project? You’ll note that the logo has a deuterium atom in there – I’m thinking ahead.

25 08 2013
Peh Hoo Guan

Hi Mark,
It’s a sad thing that you have to stop your project halfway….
I found out about amateur fusion as a science hobby few years back and I thought of jumping into this as a hobby. And yes, I came across your blog as well as well as the video interview on vimeo and the talk you gave on__ which I found on youtube.

FYI, I’m a graduate with B.Sc degree in Nuclear Science. And seeing the amateur science project on nuclear fusion, especially, your project kind of like inspiring me to do science as a hobby for fun. Despite that I’m not doing anything related to nuclear or radiation in my job, and I felt kind of bored in the job. So I guess, I’d like to put my 3 years worth of knowledge that I had gained during my university into something practical. But anyway, the fact that I’ don’t have much money to get started had truly hold me back from getting started with my own project.

Well, although solving energy crisis by building a small scale table top fusion reactor to generate power might seems to be a bit too far to be achievable, I see it as a potential nuclear instruments for various applications i.e. neutron generator to produce neutrons for various applications likes neutron imaging, neutron activation analysis. Those are still interesting applications for nuclear hobbyist which you may want to reconsider before stopping your project for good.

By the way, thanks for sharing your works online, and thanks again for inspiring me!!

All the best

Greeting from Malaysia,
Hoo Guan, Peh

13 09 2013

Big inspiration for me, loved your “open source” talk, sometimes I wonder if poeple like you and Ed Moses from the livermoore labs exchange ideas and talk on regular basis. A new urgency grows daily around “fusion”. We need fusion, now! but funding is getting cut every where, still it must be done!! Keep the Aspidistras Flying

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