Fusion really is 20 years away

In: Uncategorized

11 Dec 2010

Michio Kaku, a professor of theoretical physics at the City University of New York, argues that nuclear fusion – the form of energy that powers that sun – really could be harnessed within two decades. Although similar predictions have been made in the past, the joke is that fusion is always 20 years away, he argues that this time really is different. In California a large laser fusion facility has been set up at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and in France the ITER fusion reactor should be operational in 2019.

Before that, within about 10 years, solar energy is likely to be as cheap as fossil fuels. Until then fossil fuels will contain more energy in a convenient form than almost any other energy source. Therefore over the next 10-15 years the best strategy is likely to be to have a mix of different forms of energy.

Previous posts on this subject include 17 February 2009 and 11 October 2009.