New £22m fusion tech site in Yorkshire reaches construction milestone

The facility is expected to help commercialise nuclear fusion as a major source of low carbon electricity

The Big Zero report

A new £22 million research facility in South Yorkshire for fusion technology has reached a major construction milestone.

External construction of the Fusion Technology site in Rotherham – which is being built to engage industry and research organisations in commercial fusion development – has been completed.

The facility is expected to help commercialise nuclear fusion as a major source of low carbon electricity – it will develop and test technologies for fusion materials and components, for example, novel metals and ceramics.

They will then be tested and evaluated under conditions simulating the inside of a fusion reactor.

The building, located at the Advanced Manufacturing Park, will be handed over to the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) in September for the second phase.

The UKAEA says the site will help UK companies win contracts as part of ITER – the key international fusion project being built in the south of France.

In addition, it will enable technology development for the first fusion power plants, which are already being designed.

Damon Johnstone, Head of UKAEA Yorkshire, said: “We are delivering the new facility at pace, with major milestones on building mobilisation and recruitment for the new facility proceeding to plan. There are exciting times ahead; the Fusion Technology facility in Rotherham will be unique in the world and as well as delivering cutting-edge R&D, it will help to seed the development of a UK supply chain for fusion.

“We can’t wait to get going and have no doubt the hub of manufacturing excellence being created in the area will prove to be of great importance to the commercialisation of fusion power.”

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