Ever since Philo T. Farnsworth, the television invention pioneer, discovered that a high voltage electrical field could be created to heat ions and create nuclear fusion by forcing the heated ions together, it has spurred an interest in homemade nuclear fusion among some home hobbyists. In 1964, Farnsworth and his partner Hirsch built their nuclear fusor, and hobbyists quickly became impressed how simple and easy it is to build a nuclear fusion unit at home. One of the easiest to fuse isotopes is the long isotope deuterium from hydrogen because a relatively low voltage is required to heat the ions enough to fuse and create helium.
Television electronics loaned a great deal to the development of early nuclear fusion research and experiments because devices based off television receiving tubes. Early fusors were little more than TV tube adapted units where there was particle acceleration injected into the vacuum. With voltage applied to create heated particles, ions are forced together at the center of the fusor, fusing together.
The main elements to create a nuclear fusor are a vacuum chamber of some type, but the better radiation shielding, the better to protect against X-radiation and gamma rays. Some sort of vacuum pump and vacuum gauges are required to purge the chamber of all oxygen and all but only trace atoms in the vacuum. An electrode in the center with high voltage applied from a neon tube ballast transformer or even a high voltage flyback transformer from an older tube styled TV set apply over 12,000 volts of DC current required to create enough heat from this high voltage source to fuse ions together as they are heated and forced together at the center of the electrode sphere. For safety reasons, the fusor should not be run but for very short periods, and at higher voltages, producing more lethal current, perhaps a viewing camera and television would be better suited to view the core reactions of the nuclear fusor. And, of course, a geiger counter would be a wise investment to understand how much radiation is being created through the nuclear fusion process.
The Internet contains a few amateur nuclear experimenters blogs and Websites, where some hobbyists show off their latest nuclear fusion experiments. When you see the blue glow of fusion at the core of the high voltage electrode ball, knowing that ions are being heated and this is creating particle acceleration with fusing in the center of the vacuum chamber, you know that your efforts have been rewarded and you have joined the nuclear fusion club.