It’s the ultimate energy challenge – to replicate the nuclear fusion process that powers the Sun. It involves extreme conditions, such as incredibly hot plasma held in magnetic bottles (tokamaks) or hundreds of lasers converging on a peppercorn-sized fuel pellet.
2022 saw some big breakthroughs announced from public research programmes, and private companies are also making rapid progress and developing new technologies such as high temperature superconductors. What does this mean for fusion’s prospects? Will it bring us clean energy for a brighter future? Plasma physicist Dr Melanie Windridge describes the latest progress.
Dr Melanie Windridge is a plasma physicist and writer who loves mountains and believes that science and exploration go hand in hand. She has climbed Mount Everest and the Old Man of Hoy.
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