Energy production using nuclear fusion in 30 years. True this time?

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Tiistai 13.12.2022 klo 15.49 - Mikko Nikinmaa

When I became interested in science in 1960’s, I read with excitement about the possibility of energy production via nuclear fusion. Unlimited amount of energy would be produced without any waste material. It was estimated that commercial nuclear fusion power plants would be functioning in 30 years.

In 1970’s there was a severe oil crisis. People were saving electricity, because of the very high price of oil. Individuals with a strong belief on nuclear fusion consolidated the public promising that the oil price fluctuations would not matter soon, since nuclear fusion power plants would produce plentiful of electricity in 30 years.

When worries of climate change started in 1990’s-2000’s, individuals trusting on mankind’s capacity to solve environmental problems with advances in technology were of the opinion that nuclear fusion could replace fossil fuels in energy production in 30 years.

For the past 60 years, commercial energy production with nuclear fusion has been hoped to happen in 30 years. So, the news from Livermore Laboratory showing that irradiation of small amount of hydrogen with laser beams produced more energy than put in by the laser beams indicates that a controlled fusion was achieved give real hope that nuclear fusion can form an important energy source in 30 years.

Avainsanat: electricity production, nuclear power, climate change

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