STFC’s Hartree Centre and the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) are using supercomputing and Artificial Intelligence to design technologies to make fusion energy a commercial reality.
Fusion energy has the potential to be a revolutionary and limitless energy source that will help us reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and tackle climate change.
The collaboration is now progressing into an exciting second phase of a five-year joint project designed to help scientists develop viable fusion energy technologies virtually, rather than via expensive, real world prototyping.
Four million times more energy than fossil fuels
Fusing atoms together generate nearly four million times more energy than a chemical reaction, such as the burning of coal, oil or gas, and four times more than nuclear fission.
Its advantages are far reaching, and include:
- No greenhouse gasses
- No long term radioactive waste
- It is virtually unlimited
- It is intrinsically safe
A strategy for the future
In 2021, the Government published the UK Fusion Strategy, setting out how it will enable fusion energy. As part of this, UKAEA, a global leader in fusion energy science and technology, is responsible for STEP (Spherical Tokamak for Energy Production) the UK’s first prototype facility, that will pave the way for commercial development of fusion power stations.
Last year, in support of this, the Hartree Centre and the UKAEA took the first steps towards creating a UK Centre of Excellence in Extreme Scale Computing for Fusion, at STFC’s Daresbury Laboratory, at Sci-Tech Daresbury.
Home to some of the most advanced supercomputing and artificial intelligence technologies in the UK, the Hartree Centre will help scientists develop the necessary reactor technologies quicker and more affordably.