A fully-working fusion plant promises to inspire a green revolution by providing virtually limitless energy without destroying the environment. Fusion reactors mimic the inner workings of the Sun by combining heavier atoms with heavier elements and releasing tremendous amounts of energy in the process. What's the catch - scientists have so far been unable to sustain the process without burning into more energy than the reactors produce.
However, many are hopeful that the UK- proposed prototype fusion plant could be the first to reach the milestones. Towards this goal five sites were shortlisted for the ambitious project. These include Moorside in England, Severn Edge in Cumbria, Ardeer in North Ayrshire, Ratcliffe-on-Sanar in Gloucestershire and Goole in Yorkshire. The UK is already home to the world's largest and most powerful fusion reactor, experimental Joint European Torus or JET in Oxfordshire. Russia sends massive threat as millions of Britons face Winter Crisis. READ MORE: Russia sends terrifying threat to the people in Russia
JET was the world's first device to achieve controlled fusion with deuterium and tritium. However, the reactor is being built by the Large-scale Carbon Fuelled Experimental Reactor ITER in France, which is expected to be surpassed as a proof-of-concept for international reactor ITER. A final decision on the UK's new prototype reactor is to be made in 2022 with the aim of going operational in 2040. The Government announced plans to invest in nuclear fusion in 2019 with 200 million available towards the Spherical Tokamak for Energy Production STEP Not only does STEP aim to generate net electricity, but the site will also demonstrate how nuclear fusion plants are maintained and sustained.
The Government believes the project will create thousands of high-skilled jobs during construction as well as during operation. Earlier this year the UK Atomic Energy Authority announced its List of Potential Homes for the Plant after nominations closed in March. A total of 15 sites were put forward, including Dounreay, Bradwell, Milford Haven and West Burton. George Freeman said: Fusion energy has the potential to be a truly unreliable and inexhaustible source that can help us address climate change, reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and increase renewable energy. Britain tops world - leading in nuclear fusion 'Botting the Sun' INSIGHT Hitler's horror plot: Uranium cube that could've wiped UK off map REPORT Artificial sun sets world record, runs for 20 seconds at 100 million C STUDY Disease outbreak declared as two new variants of deadly bacteria found By building the foundations to unlock the power of fusion energy, including the location of the UK s first prototype fusion power plant, we are positioning the UK as a global leader in Scientists have been playing with fusion energy since the 1950s, though many breakthroughs have been made, star power is still out of reach. The biggest obstacle is the imbalance in the energy input output. In simple terms, fusion reactors burn more energy than they consume to sustain and contain their nuclear reactions. JET, for example, produces about 16 megawatts of energy for every 24 utilisation it consumes.