Nuclear fusion: surprise announcement from China, will the country be the first to master the energy of the Sun?

Chinese scientists have just announced their desire to master nuclear fusion within six years.

Powerful, clean, safe and inexhaustible. Nuclear fusion, which reproduces the energy of the Sun, is the ultimate energy Holy Grail. A real step forward for Humanity, after which many countries are running, without for the moment achieving it completely.

No team in the world has yet managed to build a reactor that would produce more energy than that needed to create the fusion reaction. Although the Korean KSTAR Tokamak recently announced that it had succeeded in maintaining a plasma for more than 17 minutes at more than 70 million degrees, the progress made over the past 10 years remains laborious and limited.

But earlier this month, China made a surprise announcement. The country intends to master nuclear fusion by the end of the decade.

Hybrid power plant

On September 9, Professor Peng Xianjue from the Chinese Academy of Engineering Physics assured that the Chinese government had approved the construction of the world’s largest pulsed power station in Chengdu, central-western province of Sichuan. , reports theEurasianTimes. It would be a hybrid plant that mixes nuclear fission and fusion.

The fusion energy produced by this installation would in fact not be used directly to supply the electricity network: it would be channeled to create a flow of fast particles which would strike the uranium, the fuel of the “fission” part of the power plant. .

A technique, different from that chosen by Westerners, which could allow China to achieve a viable system much more quickly. The Chinese authorities are counting on technical mastery from 2028. For commercial use planned for 2035.

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