General Fusion has agreed to build and operate its Fusion Demonstration Plant (FDP) at the UK Atomic Energy Authority’s Culham Campus in Oxfordshire.
Canada-headquartered General Fusion said it will enter into a “long-term lease” with UKAEA following construction of a new facility at Culham to host the FDP.
The demonstration plant aims to verify General Fusion's proprietary Magnetized Target Fusion (MTF) technology can create fusion conditions in a practical and cost-effective manner at power plant relevant scales, as well as refine the economics of fusion energy production, leading to the subsequent design of a commercial fusion pilot plant.
“This new plant by General Fusion is a huge boost for our plans to develop a fusion industry in the UK, and I’m thrilled that Culham will be home to such a cutting-edge and potentially transformative project,” said Amanda Solloway, Science Minister for UK Government. “Fusion energy has great potential as a source of limitless, low-carbon energy, and today’s announcement is a clear vote of confidence in the region and the UK’s status as a global science superpower.”
Construction is anticipated to begin in 2022, with operations beginning approximately three years later.
General Fusion and UKAEA also intend to collaborate on a range of fusion energy technologies for power plant design and operation.
“Coming to Culham gives us the opportunity to benefit from UKAEA’s expertise,” stated Christofer Mowry, CEO, General Fusion. “By locating at this campus, General Fusion expands our market presence beyond North America into Europe, broadening our global network of government, institutional, and industrial partners. This is incredibly exciting news for not only General Fusion, but also the global effort to develop practical fusion energy.”
The Culham Campus, the home of the UK’s national fusion research programme, is owned and managed by UKAEA, widely recognised as a world leader in fusion energy development and innovation.
Image: A look at General Fusion's planned Fusion Demonstration Plant at the UKAEA Culham Campus (Photo credit: UKAEA)