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Prime Minster hails ‘world-leading’ fusion research at Culham

07:54 30 August in Advanced Engineering & Manufacturing, Environment, Energy & Infrastructure, News, Oxfordshire

Prime Minister Boris Johnson chose the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) at Culham Science Centre, Oxfordshire to make his first science announcement, unveiling plans to  develop a new fast-track visa route for the brightest and best scientists to continue to move to the UK after Brexit.

The Prime Minister was shown how the UKAEA are harnessing the huge potential of nuclear fusion as a low-carbon energy source, including the new MAST Upgrade fusion experiment, which is reconsidering a compact design for future fusion power stations.

Talking to some of the UKAEA’s apprentices, he also discussed plans for a new £12 million apprentice training centre, which will be opening in September at Culham.

 “It was fantastic to visit Culham Science Centre today and meet the men and women we are helping to invent a sustainable fusion reactor. The UK is leading the world in this sector, thanks in significant part to the work of the UK Atomic Energy Authority. I’m confident that, with the help of the immigration reforms I have announced today, we will continue to do so for many years to come.”

Boris Johnson, Prime Minister


Whilst there, Boris Johnson also visited the UKAEA’s robotics centre, RACE, to witness how the most recent research is encouraging the UK industry to compete in the fast-growing robotics sector.

“Talking to the PM today I could see he’s an enthusiast for science. He wants the UK to be bold – and what could be bolder than taking on the challenge of delivering fusion to address climate change.”

Rob Buckingham, RACE Director


“Wonderful to hear of the Prime Minister’s recent visit to the Culham Centre and the Government’s continued support for UKAEA’s world-leading research. We are proud that the centre, based in the heart of the Thames Valley, is at the forefront of the sector positioning the UK as a leader in sustainable nuclear energy.”

Paul Britton, CEO Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce


Read more HERE.

Other news at Culham:

Plans move ahead with £5 million contract for Tritium Research Centre at Culham

The UKAEA has been awarded a system design and integration contract for its new Hydrogen-3 Advanced Technology (H3AT) tritium facility to a consortium led by Cheshire-based company, Different by Design. The facility will be commissioned in 2021 and have the capacity to hold tritium as well as, a ‘closed-loop’ research system.

The consortium will design, supply and install the mechanical and electrical instrumentation necessary for the new plant at Culham Science Centre. The new H3AT is intended to support the development of new technologies in order to process and store the fuel, that could well be used in future fusion power plants. The system will also be the first to bring all the stand-alone technologies of each component together into one place. This combination will also allow for the recycling and reuse of tritium and the ability to use it for further experiments.

 “The H3AT facility will provide a truly world-class capability, and will enable the development of technology, expertise and skills to support UK industry growth.”

Colin Walters, Director of the National Fusion Technology Platform at UKAEA


Read more HERE.