European Union OKs fusion project

September 3, 2007

European scientists will build on U.S. military research to try to create laser-based nuclear fusion aimed at replacing fossil fuels, it was reported.

A team of British-led scientists have won approval from the European Union for the project, which aims to produce almost no greenhouse gases or long-lived radioactive waste, The Times of London reported Monday.

Nuclear fusion potentially could solve the world's energy crisis by harnessing the process that drives the sun, The Times reported.

Years of research by U.S. military scientists have developed the basic technology but the energy needed to reach the temperatures at which such reactions occur has outweighed the energy produced, The Times reported.

The prototype for the project is likely to be built in Britain, using the world's most powerful laser to generate temperatures of millions of degrees, The Times reported.

If it works, laser fusion power stations could supply most of the world's energy needs by the middle of the century, said Mike Dunne, who leads the project team.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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