World’s first integrated test facility for fusion power plant equipment to be built in Japan
Power generation with fusion-relevant technologies planned by 2024
TOKYO, 06 July 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Kyoto Fusioneering Ltd. (CEO: Taka Nagao, hereinafter referred to as “KF”) has completed the preliminary design of an integrated test facility for the fusion power plant equipment, and construction has now started in Japan around August . A world first, this installation, named UNITY: unique integrated test facilityis on track to demonstrate power generation using fusion-relevant technologies in 2024.
UNITY has a pioneering design that can test both the heat extraction and fuel cycle systems required for fusion power plants in a single facility. With the ability to test under flexible conditions, UNITY will be the primary power generation system test platform for private fusion companies, allowing these companies to focus their resources on developing the power core. of merger.
UNITY is equipped with a test blanket module, both liquid metal and molten salt primary cooling loops, heat exchangers, tritium recovery system and electricity generator ; in addition, they will be integrated with a test bypass module, tritium pumps and a tritium fuel circulation system. First power generation is planned for the end of 2024, after which all relevant components for future fusion power plants will be simultaneously demonstrated under commercial conditions.
The introductory video on UNITY is available on the link below:
Fusion has long been heralded as the ultimate energy that could fundamentally solve the world’s energy problems. In recent years, the momentum towards commercialization has accelerated around the world, with the United States and the United Kingdom announcing plans to commercialize the fusion within the next 15 years or so. However, key reactor technologies and components, essential for future fusion power plants, are still under development. Solving these critical path engineering challenges represents one of the biggest hurdles to commercializing fusion power.
KF is a startup spun off from Kyoto University, from which the company adopted and developed cutting-edge capabilities in fusion engineering. KF has raised over $17 million to date and now employs 50 people worldwide. KF’s state-of-the-art engineering products include a high-efficiency gyrotron for plasma heating, liquid metal blanket for heat extraction, proprietary tritium pumps and advanced heat exchangers. To further strengthen our position in fusion engineering, KF decided to build UNITY, the world’s first integrated test facility for fusion power plant components. UNITY’s objective is to demonstrate a suite of equipment used from heat extraction to power generation under conditions close to those of a KF customers’ commercial fusion power plant.
UNITY has completed the preliminary design phase and is starting its construction in August, which will be carried out in close collaboration with several major engineering companies in Japan. Initial construction of the test loop, which is the base of the facility, is expected to be completed by March 2023. Completion of UNITY’s full construction and subsequent demonstration of power generation is planned. by the end of 2025.
UNITY will enable the integrated testing of a suite of energy conversion equipment in a fusion power plant without the use of nuclear reactions by technically simulating the thermal and magnetic environment in a fusion power core. Similarly, the permeation of tritium will be simulated with deuterium. In addition to simulating a fusion power core environment, the facility is equipped with a blanket originally designed for high temperature heat extraction, liquid metal/molten salt loops for the high temperature heat transfer, which will be through an advanced heat exchanger, to a power generation system. UNITY will also house a plasma heating system, plasma exhaust, hydrogen and tritium pumps, and a fusion fuel cycle demonstration system.
Such a suite of components will not only be needed for DEMO-type power plants, which are being studied around the world as part of the ITER project, but also for innovative power plant designs being developed in the private sector. Although only launched in 2019, KF has established itself as a key fusion technology company, providing services and equipment to partners in the fusion industry. However, by developing and demonstrating the world’s first test facility in UNITY, KF will establish more partnerships with research institutes and fusion developers around the world. With UNITY, KF can now help private fusion companies focus on developing the core of fusion energy.
About Kyoto Fusioneering Ltd.
Kyoto Fusioneering is a privately funded technology start-up founded in 2019, with its Japanese headquarters in Tokyo and its UK office in Reading. The company is focused on the development of advanced technologies for commercial fusion reactors, including gyrotron systems, tritium fuel cycle technologies, and breeding blankets for tritium production and power generation. The company focuses on innovative solutions that are both successful and commercially viable. By supporting public and private fusion developers around the world, the company is accelerating the realization of fusion as the ultimate energy source for humanity.
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