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When will the first 100 Megawatt fusion-based electrical generation facility come into service?
Large-scale generation of electric power by nuclear fusion is a holy grail of energy science research. The potential for scalability (due to abundant ocean reserves of deuterium), and the relatively small level and short lifetime of radioactive waste could allow fusion power to contribute significantly to a zero-carbon sustainable global electrical supply.
In additional to large governmental efforts like the US National Ignition Facility, Europe's ITER, HiPER, and the Wendelstein 7-X, there are also a number of private companies developing fusion technology.
Private efforts include General Fusion, Tri-Alpha Energy, and Lockheed-Martin, but all are cagey about their benchmarks and progress. Is there a real shot at zero-carbon, zero-long-lived nuclear waste energy from fusion, from these or the larger governmental efforts?
Well ask: When will the first facility generating a net 100 MW of electricity, using only fusion, come online?
To separate this from a distinct question of low-energy nuclear reaction technologies, we'll specify that this applies to hot nuclear fusion at 100,000 K or more.
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