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Second round of 2020 public-private partnership awards announced by INFUSE fusion program


The INFUSE fusion program announced a second round of 2020 public-private partnership awards to accelerate fusion energy development. The awards, supporting 10 projects, enable private industry to collaborate with Department of Energy national laboratories on fusion technologies and related R&D.

The awards are provided through the Innovation Network for Fusion Energy program , which was established in 2019. INFUSE is sponsored by the Fusion Energy Sciences program within DOE’s Office of Science and is focused on driving cost-effective fusion energy technologies through private-public research partnerships. Oak Ridge National Laboratory manages the program with Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory.

The funded projects provide companies access to the leading expertise and facilities of DOE’s national laboratories to assist in addressing critical scientific and technological challenges in pursuing fusion energy systems. The program solicited proposals from fusion industry and selected projects for one or two-year awards valued between $50,000 and $500,000 each, with a 20% cost share from industry partners.

The awards are subject to a successful negotiation of a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement between the companies and the partnering laboratories. The program does not provide funding directly to the private companies, but instead provides support to the partnering DOE laboratories to enable them to collaborate with their industrial partners.   

The selected projects represent eight private companies. The projects will take advantage of INFUSE’s areas of expertise: enabling fusion technologies, such as magnets and pellet fueling; materials, including structural and functional materials required for fusion devices; plasma and engineering diagnostics; modeling and simulation; and experimental capabilities, which utilize the facilities of national laboratory system to qualify materials or test engineering concepts.

The following list includes the title of each the private company, funded project and the DOE partner laboratory.

  • Commonwealth Fusion Systems: Time-Dependent Boundary Modeling to Inform Design of SPARC Diagnostic and Actuators (ORNL)
  • General Fusion Corp.: Ion Temperature Diagnostic Improvement (ORNL)
  • Magneto Inertial Fusion Technologies, Inc.: Staged Z-pinch Modeling with HYDRA and CHICAGO Codes (LLNL)
  • Princeton Fusion Systems: Magnetic Field Vector Measurements Using Doppler-Free Saturation Spectroscopy (PPPL)
  • Renaissance Americas, Inc.: Innovative Joints for High-Temperature Superconducting Tapes (BNL)
  • TAE Technologies, Inc.: Feasibility Study of High-Flux FRC Formation via Spheromak Merging for C-2W Experiments (PPPL)
  • TAE Technologies, Inc.: Measurement of Magnetic Field using Doppler-Free Saturation (ORNL)
  • Tokamak Energy, Inc.: Fabrication and Characterization of Transition Metal Hydrides for Radiation Shielding in Tokamak Devices (LANL)
  • Tokamak Energy, Inc.: XGC1 Predictions of Scrape-off Layer Width in Present and Future High Field Spherical Tokamaks (PPPL)
  • Type One Energy Group, Inc.: Characterization and Qualification of JK2LB Alloy for Additive Manufacturing of Fusion Components (ORNL)

Full abstracts for each project are available on the INFUSE website.

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