Shortly before completing its first lustrum by the end of 2018, EUROfusion has published its revised Fusion Research Roadmap.
It is an evolution of the first roadmap preserving the unshakeable elements such as the eight missions. It focusses on the main devices ITER, DEMO and DONES. But in updating the path to fusion energy, we have emphasised the relative timing of the DEMO and ITER projects to achieve the demonstration of fusion electricity as fast as possible.
Acting fast is vital as climate change needs to be battled right now. Energy from fossil fuels must be replaced by CO2 free energy. There is tremendous and worldwide effort in the development of renewables as wind and solar, in combination with storage in lakes, batteries and chemical fuels.
Fusion will not contribute to the CO2 transition by 2050, but given its inherent advantages (safe, low physical footprint, abundant availability of fuel) it has the potential to deliver an important part of the world’s energy need around the turn of the century.
The new Fusion Roadmap has been written with all this in mind: it shows a realistic time path towards a fusion reactor while trying to minimise risks as much as possible by proposing a dedicated research plan.
Now EUROfusion is five years on its way, we have already made progress along the time line of the roadmap. Recent highlights are Wendelstein 7-X‘s world record triple product for stellarators achieved and the mimicking of a full per year of ITER divertor heat load on the tungsten tiles in MAGNUM-PSI. EUROfusion funded work has been awarded with many prizes as the Nuclear Fusion prize, the SOFT Innovation Prize, and the American Landau-Spitzer prize. We are very proud and look forward to continuing our excellent performance also in coming years.
At the end of 2018 we also say goodbye to Jérôme Paméla, who has chaired the General Assembly during the past four years and guided EUROfusion from shortly after its inception to the organisation it is now. We are indebted and very thankful for his contributions and all the energy he has invested in our consortium. For this issue of Fusion in Europe we interviewed him as well as his successor, Ambrogio Fasoli.
Currently, 4.000 people work for EUROfusion. I would like to end this editorial by thanking all scientists, engineers, managers and administrators for their contribution to the success of EUROfusion.
For 2019, I wish all readers of Fusion in Europe a very successful and productive year in good health for you and your families.
Tony Donné, EUROfusion Programme Manager