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Projects Focus on Both Major Forms of Fusion Energy

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced $5 million in funding for research aimed at finding lower-cost pathways to the achievement of fusion energy. 

“Fusion holds out enormous promise for the eventual delivery of virtually unlimited clean energy to meet the world’s energy needs,” said Dr. Chris Fall, Director of DOE’s Office of Science.  “These projects call upon the ingenuity of both the private sector and the larger fusion research community to find lower-cost approaches on the road to feasible fusion energy.”

The four projects straddle both major forms of fusion energy.  Two projects are focused on magnetic confinement fusion, which uses powerful magnetic fields to contain a hot plasma inside a fusion reactor, while the other two projects focus on inertial confinement fusion, which seeks to achieve self-sustaining fusion reactions through the use of high-powered lasers.

The projects are part of a joint effort between ARPA-E and the DOE’s Office of Science Fusion Energy Sciences (FES) program to support proposals of mutual interest that were submitted to the ARPA-E Breakthroughs Enabling THermonuclear-fusion Energy (BETHE) program (

Planned Office of Science funding for these awards is $5 million in Fiscal Year 2020 dollars.  Projects will range from three to four years in duration.

Awards were made by competitive peer review.  A list of awards is available on the FES home page under the heading, “What’s New.”