Fusion power? Yes!

October 12, 2023, 7:00AMNuclear NewsKen Petersen

Ken Petersen

I have jumped on the fusion power bandwagon! Power from fusion is going to happen. When I look at it, there are several factors that reinforce this. Technology has advanced and moved from basic science/research to engineering solutions. Several breakthroughs in supportive technologies have made fusion power plants a possibility. Finally—and most importantly—the private sector is heavily involved and investing to help move engineering solutions forward. This has resulted in a few dozen fusion companies developing different technologies with the same power generation goals. It is very reminiscent of the development of LW fission reactors in the 1950s and ’60s.

Technology has advanced in regard to materials and especially high-temperature superconducting magnets, high-energy lasers, and computer modeling. These improvements have allowed machines to become smaller and achieve the density, temperature, and time needed for fusion to occur.

General Fusion demo plant construction will begin this summer

January 16, 2023, 7:02AMNuclear News
A rendering of the planned demo plant. (Image: General Fusion)

The U.K. Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) announced on January 12 that the South Oxfordshire District Council Planning Committee approved a planned fusion energy demonstration project at UKAEA’s Culham Campus. UKAEA and General Fusion, the magnetized target fusion company that designed the demo plant, announced that same day that construction will begin this summer, with commissioning planned for 2026 and full operations by early 2027.

General Fusion marshals CNL support for Canadian fusion power by 2030

November 17, 2022, 12:00PMNuclear News
This still image, taken from a General Fusion video, depicts the demo plant that will be built near Oxford, U.K. (Image: General Fusion)

Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL) and General Fusion have announced a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to “develop fusion energy research capabilities within CNL, to support the goal of constructing a potential General Fusion commercial power plant in Canada before 2030.” The plant would follow on a demonstration-scale plant that General Fusion wants to have operating in the United Kingdom by 2027 to validate the performance and economics of the technology.