Science | December 22, 2019 10:43 am

British Startup Aims to Succeed at Fusion Energy

It’s a technique that would revolutionize clean power

Tokamak
A tokamak, like this one, is essential to producing fusion energy.
Tokamak Energy/YouTube

What if there was a way to produce massive amounts of energy on a scale previously unheard of, and to do so in one of the cleanest ways possible? In theory, this could revolutionize elements of human society — and it’s not as far off as we might think. What’s the name of this process? Fusion.

As is noted in this Bloomberg video, fusion has been the energy source of the future for a long time now; there’s never quite been that breakthrough moment that leads to the technology being easily accessible. Proof of concept certainly exists: fusion is, after all, how the sun works. And if implemented, it would be phenomenally energy-efficient — green energy on a scale previously undreamt of.

Bloomberg’s video turns the spotlight on Tokamak Energy, a startup based in the U.K. making use of an innovative design to generate fusion energy, with promising results. 

So far, the report notes, previous attempts at fusion energy have used more energy than they’ve generated — which defeats the purpose of trying to harness fusion energy. It also details the saga of ITER, an international project described on its website as “among the most ambitious science endeavors of our time.”

ITER is currently under construction in Saint Paul-lez-Durance, France. According to the Bloomberg video, this process is one that’s been in the works for decades. It’s significantly larger than Tokamak Energy’s devices — and significantly more expensive. (Though its estimated cost is less than, say, that of the Beijing Olympics.)

As the video notes, Tokamak Energy isn’t the only company working to take steps towards realizing fusion — which is an optimistic sign that this technology might be a reality before long.

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