UK fusion energy project given go ahead

By Catrin Jones17 January 2023

The construction of a fusion energy project in Oxford, UK has been approved by South Oxfordshire District Council Planning Committee.

Visualisation of the fusion energy project (Photo: UK Atomic Energy Authority)

The demonstration plant, set to begin constuction this year, will be built by the Canadian energy company General Fusion.

The facility will be built to 70% scale of a commercial power plant at the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority’s (UKAEA) Culham Campus.

It has been reported that the fusion machine is expected to be commissioned in 2026 and fully operational by early 2027.

The demonstration will also create fusion conditions in a power plant-relevant environment, achieving temperatures of over 100 million degrees Celsius. This is said to be a crucial step on the path to eventually powering homes, businesses and industries with zero-carbon fusion energy. 

“The UK has been a longstanding leader in fusion energy development. We are thrilled to join the Culham Campus and the UK’s Fusion Cluster, and anticipate creating 60 long-term jobs at the site,” said Greg Twinney, CEO of General Fusion.

The building is set to achieve BREEAM excellent accreditation through a reusing waste heat, natural ventilation to minimize cooling loads, as well as a large green roof and extensive photovoltaics.

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