Sign In

Communications of the ACM

ACM TechNews

Fusion Startups Step in to Realize Decades-Old Clean Power Dream

View as: Print Mobile App Share:
General Fusion's Prototype Compression System

The Canadian startup General Fusions prototype compression system includes a mini sphere and 14 full-size pistons.

Credit: Kristopher Grunert

Startups are trying to make clean fusion-generated electricity a reality by designing systems for squeezing atoms together, partly enabled by computing innovations. First Light Fusion founder Nick Hawker uses advanced computer modeling to find fusion solutions, inspired by his work at the U.K.'s University of Oxford.

Hawker employed sophisticated algorithms and powerful processors to demonstrate how forceful bubble implosions could trigger massively high temperatures for fusion, and his company is building machines to test those models and develop a prototype generator. First Light uses computers to plan reactors that use physical compression to trigger the collapsing bubbles, simulating super-fast shockwaves through advances in processing power, modeling, and machine learning.

Said Hawker, "Just a bigger computer isn't enough."

From The Wall Street Journal
View Full Article - May Require Paid Subscription


Abstracts Copyright © 2020 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


No entries found

Sign In for Full Access
» Forgot Password? » Create an ACM Web Account