Nuclear Fusion: US to partner with Japan

“U.S. Deputy Secretary of Energy David Turk and Japan’s minister of education, sports, science and technology, Masahito Moriyama, met in Washington on Tuesday to discuss fusion.”

Article includes update of recent efforts. Mostly efforts to promote fusion development.

1 Like

It would seem that they could make a federal project, that would ask any state that wants nuclear power, to expedite the building of the plants. They really need to speed it up and get them built.


The state of fusion science is nowhere close to making a working power plant today. There are no working fusion power plants anywhere on Earth right now. There are too many engineering problems associated with materials, as well as the engineered processes necessary to support long term operation.

The largest and possibly best chance at further developing the technology is the ITER project, currently being built in Europe. But even ITER won’t be a working power plant. At best, it will produce a sustainable fusion reaction for perhaps several minutes at a time. Real power plants generally need to run continuously for weeks or months.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Throwing some money at fusion research is okay, I guess. But, IMO, those funds would be better spent developing safer and cheaper fission power. We already know how to do fission. Hundreds of fission power plants are currently in service throughout the world. But we can make fission better, with more advanced fuels, inherently walk-away safe designs, as well as making them cheaper and easier to build.

  • Pete

Joke of the century. If we knew how to do fission, we would have a lot more of those plants vs coal/nat gas (based on cost–because “we know how to do fission”). The real world contradicts your statement.


Nuclear fission is the largest single source of low-carbon electricity in the United States. Based on 2023 electricity generation data from the EIA, plus renewables data from here

US low carbon sources of power, 2023
Nuclear   775,347 GWh
Wind      425,235
Hydro     239,855
Solar PV  235,270
Biomass    39,179
Other      27,597

Looking at all sources, nuclear fission is #2 behind natural gas, but nuclear generates more power than coal.

Largest US sources of electric power
Nat. Gas  1,802,062 GWh
Nuclear     775,347
Coal        675,264
Wind        425,235
Hydro       239,855
Solar PV    235,270

Based on your logic, I guess we don’t know how to do wind, solar or hydro either.

  • Pete

The US government spends orders of magnitude more money on fission than fusion. That said, the old joke is that for the last 50 years fusion has only been 20 years away. It is a longshot technology, for sure.

But what if it is only 20 years away? That’s pretty similar to the timeline for SMRs to become practical and there is no guarantee for either one.