SCHOTT Receives Over €1.3 Million to Advance Nuclear Fusion Research

SCHOTT Receives Over €1.3 Million to Advance Nuclear Fusion Research

• The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is funding the PriFUSIO research project with €18 million, including more than €1.3 million for SCHOTT.
SCHOTT is one of 10 consortium partners for laser fusion research to build the first German nuclear fusion power plant.
• SCHOTT’s laser glass was a key component of the first fusion ignition, achieved by the National Ignition Facility (NIF) in 2022.

Governments around the world are realizing the promise that fusion technology has as an limitless energy source for the future and are investing in that potential. A bipartisan bill was introduced in the United States Congress this month, and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is funding the PriFUSIO research project with €18 million for a consortium of 10 companies researching laser fusion. Part of that investment includes more than €1.3 million for SCHOTT, the international technology group, to advance research in the groundbreaking field.

When isotopes of hydrogen atoms fuse into helium atoms in the sun at temperatures of 15,000,000° C and a pressure of 100 billion bars, enormous amounts of energy are released. Laser fusion aims to recreate this phenomenon and can provide almost limitless and carbon-neutral energy, produce no long-term radioactive waste, and be safe from nuclear chain reactions. High-tech laser glass amplifies the energy and performance of the laser light.

SCHOTT has been at the forefront of fusion technology for decades. Its laser glass, manufactured in Duryea, Pennsylvania, enabled the first fusion ignition at the National Ignition Facility (NIF) in California. With more than €1.3 million in new funding research, SCHOTT aims to develop the next wave of glass innovation to enable nuclear fusion technology and promote a sustainable future.

“SCHOTT’s role in achieving the first fusion ignition at NIF with the U.S. Department of Energy was a monumental milestone for our team and highlights the importance and impact of private-public partnerships,” said Bill James, Head of Research and Development at SCHOTT North America. “Our R&D team here in the U.S. works closely with SCHOTT’s global R&D team on fusion energy advancements. This new funding will allow SCHOTT to ramp up its research and partner with other companies to develop new laser glass components and other optical materials that power a life-changing new form of energy.”

In March 2024, as part of its multi-billion-dollar funding of fusion research, the BMBF initiated two joint projects that will work over three years to realize one of the world’s first fusion power plants and the first in Germany. SCHOTT is one of 10 members of the Laser Fusion Consortium (PriFUSIO) focused on laser fusion and the development of high-power lasers for power plants.

The consortium comprises a diverse group of industry and public institutions, including the Heraeus Group, TRUMPF Laser AG, the Fraunhofer-Institut für Angewandte Optik und Feinmechanik IOF, Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH), LAYERTEC GmbH, LASEROPTIK GmbH, Focused Energy GmbH and Marvel Fusion GmbH, under the leadership of the Fraunhofer-Instituts für Lasertechnik ILT, Aachen.

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As one of the leading specialty glass companies in the world, SCHOTT has risen from a small glassworks in Jena, Germany to a global corporation with production and sales units in 33 countries. With over 17,200 employees of almost 109 nationalities,...
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