Fusion means gas will no longer be needed in the UK’s energy mix by the 2030s.
That’s the forecast made by Nicholas Hawker, Co-Founder and CEO of First Light Fusion, who spoke to ELN last week about the technology – he suggests it could prove to be the ‘magic bullet’ for decarbonisation the energy sector has long been looking for.
The Oxford-based start-up is one of several companies working across the UK to make fusion power a reality and says it expects to reach the vital stage of gain, which is where more energy is generated than inputted, within the next few years.
Mr Hawker said without fusion, he expects the renewable proportion of the UK’s energy mix to reach a maximum share of 50%, with the rest being produced by conventional gas-fired generation.
He noted this would be not because of the cost or intermittency associated with wind, solar and batteries but because the UK does not have enough manufacturing capacity to produce the volume of equipment required to meet our needs.
The CEO was confident fusion would be able to replace gas in the mix, meaning the power sector could be fully decarbonised.
He added: “The UK Government is very supportive of fusion, the UK is one of the world leaders in fusion, it has an opportunity right now to become the world leader in fusion.
“I think government is seeing this emerging industrial sector and private sector and public sector working together and seeing that in a very positive light.”
Stay tuned for a full film about First Light Fusion coming later this week.