The FIA launched The global industry in 2022 report in Brussels on July 14.
DG ENERGY Deputy Director General Massimo Garribba opened the event, remarking on the forward-thinking steps of the fusion industry and the possibility of achieving commercial fusion energy. He emphasized his excitement by the FIA member companies and the possibility of a breakthrough “that’s actually able to deliver.”
FIA CEO Andrew Holland presented the 2022 report results, highlighting the rapid growth of the global fusion industry. Over $4.7 billion has been privately invested in the global fusion industry, a 139% increase in funding in the last 12 months. 8 new fusion companies have entered the market. There is growing confidence in the timeline to commercialization– 93% of the companies surveyed this year believe that fusion will be on the grid by the 2030s, up from the 83% in the 2021 version of the report.
Also highlighted was the emphasis on the geographical competitiveness driving fusion acceleration. Out of the 33 fusion firms represented in the report, 21 are American– although the supply chain and workforce have heavy global representation.
The panel discussion that followed – made up of Focused Energy CEO Thomas Forner, Marvel Fusion CEO Moritz von der Linden, Renaissance Fusion CEO Francesco Volpe, Cosylab CEO Dr. Mark Pleško, and Eni Head of Magnetic Fusion Initiatives Francesca Ferrazza – focused primarily on this topic, and emphasized the need for Europe to foster an ecosystem that will drive fusion acceleration.
To build this ecosystem that supports and promotes fusion development, the panel highlighted the need for competitive collaboration, long-term thinking by political leaders and investors, an openness to various, viable technological approaches, and a continued increase in funding.
Members of the panel iterated the importance of global cooperation:
Francesca Ferrazza stated that fusion “needs to have a global effort” and that “competition and cooperation go together.”
Thomas Forner: “I don’t think any single company [alone] will be able to solve fusion;” it “will take collaborative work.”
Moritz von der Linden: We “cannot just bet on a horse, we need to bet on the race.”
Dr. Mark Pleško underlined the importance of “cooperation between government and industry" to accelerate development.
Looking forward, Francesco Volpe emphasized the vitality of long-term thinking and the need for the “industry to think of fusion as an emerging market”, which also “requires courageous political leaders that have a vision for the future.” In attendance, European Parliament member Ondřej Knotek supported this in his remarks as he promised to take fusion to the attention of the Parliament, and invited the fusion industry to bring the message to Parliament as well.
“Fusion is the ultimate solution for us” summed up Francesca Ferrazza, and on the importance of achieving fusion commercialization and broad deployment, Francesco Volpe emphasized “we have to do it because it’s needed.”
For more information on the global fusion industry as it stands in 2022, check out the report in full.