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phenomena has been known for more than 70 years [Marinesco & Trillat, 1933], [Frenzel & Schultes, 1934], [Zimakov, 1934] and it has been widely used by chemists in Sonochemistry.
Many different theories have been advanced to explain Sonoluminescence, but most researchers now agree that the observed light pulses are due to shock wave heating of the highly compressed gas/vapor to incandescent temperatures.
Figure-1 is a schematic of an imploding gas/vapor bubble. Figure-1a shows the bubble being compressed by the surrounding liquid which is at a higher pressure. At this point
in time the Mach number of the interface Mag = R Cg is less than unity, and thus no ( )
shock waves are formed within the bubble. Figure-1b shows a later time at which Mag>1 and a spherical shock wave has been formed. This shock wave significantly strengthens as it converges to the center of the bubble. Figures 1c and 1d show situations just after the shock wave has bounced off itself at the center of the bubble. This process leads to very high local pressures and temperatures, and the emission of a visible light pulse, and if the compressed material and conditions are suitable, nuclear (i.e., neutron) emissions. Figures 1e and 1f show subsequent times in which a rarefying shock wave travels outward from the bubble, which is now expanding because the pressure in the surrounding liquid has been reduced.
Sonoluminescence has a very large literature associated with it, for both multiple bubble sonoluminescence (MBSL) and single bubble sonoluminescence (SBSL). This interesting field has been well summarized [Crum, 1994], [Lauterborn et al, 1999], [Putterman & Weininger, 2000], [Margulis, 2000], [Young, 2004], and thus it will not be considered in detail in this paper. Suffice it to say that it has been found that during SBSL, in which a single gas bubble is levitated in the antinode of a standing pressure field and it repetitively expands and implodes at the externally-imposed ultrasonic frequency of the pressure field, that there are some inherent limitations on how energetically the bubble can be imploded. These limitations are due to shape/interfacial instability mechanisms, rectified diffusion, endothermic chemical reactions, and the so-
called Bjerknes force, − V(t)∇p(t) , which can entrap the bubble in the acoustic anti-
node, and reverses sign during acoustic pressure amplitudes over about 1.7 bar [Akhatov et al, 1997]. These limitations appear to be fundamental and limit the measured [Camera et al, 2004] and predicted [Moss et al, 1994; 1996; 1997] peak gas/plasma temperatures to about 106 K.
In any event, it was recognized early-on by the authors of this paper, that in order to be able to achieve conditions suitable for thermonuclear fusion that a completely different experimental approach was required. In particular, a technique which was originally developed for neutron detection [West et al, 1967; 1968; 1969] was adapted for our Sonofusion experiments [Taleyarkhan et al, 2002; 2004].
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