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General Fusion announces funding to build new fusion machine targeting scientific breakeven by 2026

Canada-based General Fusion announced a new Magnetized Target Fusion (MTF) machine that will fast-track the company’s technical progress. To be built at the company’s new Richmond, British Columbia headquarters, this machine is designed to achieve fusion conditions of more than 100 million degrees Celsius by 2025, and progress toward scientific breakeven—the point at which the energy produced through a fusion reaction equals or surpasses the energy required to sustain and initiate that reaction—by 2026.

In addition, the company completed the first close of its Series F raise for a combined US$25 million. The round was anchored by existing investors, BDC Capital and GIC. It also included new grant funding from the Government of British Columbia, which builds upon the Canadian government’s ongoing support through the Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF).

General Fusion says that this machine represents a significant new pillar to accelerate and de-risk the company’s demonstration program, designed to leverage the company’s recent technological advancements and provide electricity to the grid with commercial fusion energy by the early to mid-2030s.

An animation showing how General Fusion’s Magnetized Target Fusion technology works. The game-changer is a proprietary liquid metal liner in the commercial fusion machine that is mechanically compressed by high-powered pistons.

Called Lawson Machine 26 (LM26), the MTF demonstration is designed to be cost-efficient and produce results quickly using General Fusion’s unique approach to fusion. LM26 will validate the company’s ability to symmetrically compress magnetized plasmas in a repeatable manner and achieve fusion conditions at scale. The machine will integrate General Fusion’s existing operational plasma injector (PI3) with a new lithium liner compression system.

PI3 is the culmination of 24 predecessor prototypes and more than 200,000 plasma experiments. It is one of the world’s largest and most powerful operational plasma injectors, having already demonstrated plasma temperatures of five million degrees Celsius, along with 10 millisecond self-sustaining energy confinement time. Both are critical steppingstones to achieving LM26’s target of fusion conditions in 2025 and equivalent scientific breakeven in 2026.

LM26’s plasmas will be approximately 50% scale of a commercial fusion machine. It is designed to reach fusion conditions of more than 100 million degrees Celsius (10 keV). It aims to achieve deuterium-tritium breakeven equivalent using deuterium fuel. Reference to breakeven in the context of LM26 refers to the deuterium-tritium breakeven equivalent using deuterium fuel, an industry-standard approach.

The plasma injector (PI3) has already achieved the temperature and energy confinement times required by LM26.

Over the next two to three years, General Fusion will work closely with the UK Atomic Energy Authority to validate the data gathered from LM26 and incorporate it into the design of the company’s planned commercial scale demonstration in the UK.

General Fusion says that its MTF technology is unique in the fusion market. Unlike others, it was designed to scale for cost-efficient power plants from its inception by deliberately avoiding the pitfalls of other approaches that require expensive superconducting magnets or high-powered lasers. As a result, the path to generating zero-carbon electricity for the grid is shorter for General Fusion than other approaches, which still need to address longstanding barriers to the commercialization of fusion, such as machine durability (i.e., the “first wall” issue), fuel production, simple energy conversion, and commercial production economics.



Yeah right

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