The Fusion Industry Association, an association composed of 18 private companies working to commercialize fusion power, applauds the Department of Energy’s announcement of the creation of a new “Innovation Network for Fusion Energy” (INFUSE) program as a way to promote collaboration between the public and private sectors. The INFUSE website acts as the gateway for the program, providing directions and resources for how to apply for grants to work with federal researchers and other helpful links.
This new initiative within the Office of Fusion Energy Sciences will allow private companies to apply for vouchers that they would be able to spend at government-funded labs. In this way, the awards would fund private work at public laboratories within the DOE complex; helping private companies accelerate their pathway towards fusion energy.
The FIA has supported and advocated for the creation of a voucher program like this because it would enable companies to work directly with government scientists on government assets a process that is currently cumbersome, difficult, and sometimes prohibited. FIA members look forward to possible areas of collaboration, including: access to computational modeling, design validation, or experimental testing. This program will allow public-private collaboration to publish cutting-edge science, while also provide industry expertise to government scientists.
The FIA hopes that the INFUSE program will be as successful as the GAIN (Gateway for Accelerated Innovation in Nuclear) program has been in supporting advanced nuclear research and development.