DOE Announces Awards to Advance Fusion Energy

Jul 5, 2021

by ASME.org

The Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded $2.1 million through the department’s Innovation Network for Fusion Energy (INFUSE) program to 9 projects aimed at overcoming challenges in fusion energy development. Each of the 9 projects will receive 1–2-year awards between $50,000 and $500,000 each, with a 20% cost share for industry partners. Each project is made up of a collaborative team comprised of DOE national laboratories and private industry leaders. The funding will allow awardees to use the equipment and facilities within DOE’s national laboratories for research aimed at accelerating fusion energy development in the United States.  
 
“After two successful years of INFUSE, it is clear that the program offers significant benefit to the fusion community,” said James Van Dam, DOE Associate Director for Fusion Energy Sciences. “This new round of funding shows continued interest in the program as new companies continue to apply, looking to leverage the unique expertise and capabilities available at the DOE national laboratory system.”
 
The 9 awardees include:
  • Air Squared Inc. (Broomfield, CO): Design, Test, and Evaluation of a Scroll Roughing Vacuum Pump with Filter and Vespel Tip Seals for Tritium Handling (Partnership with Oak Ridge National Laboratory)
  • Commonwealth Fusion Systems (Cambridge, MA): Active Redox Control of Molten Salts for Fusion Blankets (Partnership with Savannah River National Laboratory)
  • Commonwealth Fusion Systems (Cambridge, MA): Informing Layout and Performance Requirements for SPARC Massive Gas Injection (Partnership with Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory)
  • General Atomics (San Diego, CA): Performance Testing of Low-resistance Demountable HTS Joints for Large Segmented Magnets (Partnership with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory)
  • HelicitySpace (Berkeley, CA): Simulation of the Helicity Drive Magneto-Inertial Fusion Concept (Partnership with Los Alamos National Laboratory)
  • Microsoft (Redmond, WA): Improving Plasma Control Capabilities in Magnetically-Confined Tokamak Systems with Transformer Neural Networks (Partnership with Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory)
  • Renaissance Americas Inc. (Houston, TX): Phase Diagram of Li-LiH,D,(T) Mixtures and  Implications for Tritium Retention and Extraction (Partnership with Savannah River National Laboratory)
  • TAE Technologies, Inc. (Foothill Ranch, CA): Extending Operational Boundaries in the Advanced FRC (Partnership with Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory)
  • TAE Technologies, Inc. (Foothill Ranch, CA): X-ray Diagnostic for C-2W FRC Plasma (Partnership with Los Alamos National Laboratory) 

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