Fusing two hydrogen nuclei releases a huge burst of energy – in nature, this is the type of physical reaction that powers the sun and the other stars. The great advantage of the technology is that it does not emit greenhouse gases; nor does it emit heavily polluting or highly radioactive substances, making it a highly attractive energy source. It is also virtually inexhaustible as it uses a blend of easily obtainable elements as fuel: deuterium and tritium, two hydrogen isotopes. Deuterium comes from seawater, while tritium can be produced by a physical reaction with lithium. On the downside, as you have to heat the hydrogen isotopes to temperatures of more than 100 million degrees, it's very difficult to replicate the process artificially on earth. At those temperatures the isotopes lose their electrons and turn into plasma; the nuclei can then fuse to release their atomic energy. Magnetic confinement technology is being investigated as a potential means of achieving fusion continuity control in power plants. As its name suggests, the technology uses extremely powerful magnetic fields to control the plasma in which the fusion takes place.
The journey towards this technological revolution will be a long one, but will lead to a more sustainable future. The proof? All it takes to get the same amount of energy produced by 8,500 tonnes of gasoline is 1 kilogram of “fusion fuel”, which has the added benefit of not releasing any greenhouse gases or hazardous waste. This is why we're focusing on magnetic confinement fusion and why we’re collaborating with leading public and private research bodies to develop it. We see it as a turning point in the decarbonization process.