Controlled thermonuclear fusion is moving so well that full-scale development could begin within five years, says Dr. David J. Rose….It might take 20 to 30 years beyond that before fusion could move into the power grid, though, he predicts. — Science News, February 17, 1968
Governments and private-sector start-ups are still trying to wrangle thermonuclear fusion — the process that lights up stars and ignites hydrogen bombs — for clean energy, with limited progress (SN: 2/6/16, p. 18). One of the biggest ongoing projects is ITER in France, an international effort to build the first magnetic fusion reactor that pumps out more energy than it consumes. ITER plans to flip on the machine in 2025. Optimistic estimates put the first fusion power plants on the grid no sooner than 2040.