A screening opinion request has revealed details of the fusion demonstration plant planned at Culham Science Centre.

UKAEA has applied, via Carter Jonas, to South Oxfordshire District Council, for an opinion on whether an environmental impact assessment is needed for the development on 3.7 hectares at the park.

UKAEA, in partnership with Canada-based General Fusion, plans a plant of 10,300 sq m (gross internal area) which will be the first of its kind.

The central process space will include ‘Fusion Island’ containing the fusion machine, labs and equipment rooms, a lithium test laboratory and storage space, a plasma injector and shaft assembly lab, workshops, control rooms, loading bays and refuge space.

The outer ‘non-process’ space will include offices, reception and circulation space, welfare and amenity space including a cafeteria and changing rooms, a multi-functional room and internal cycle storage space.

Power will not be produced at the plant. It is intended to help refine technology before commercialisation.

A report in its screening request states: “Fusion energy has the potential to provide the planet with low-cost, carbon zero energy forever. The Fusion Demonstration Plant proposed at UKAEA will bring this ambition one step closer to being realised.”

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