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South Korea Advances Technology for Tritium Fusion Fuel Production

Aug. 24, 2016 (EIRNS)—The National Fusion Research Institute (NFRI) of South Korea has succeeded in developing the technology for the "mass" production of tritium fuel that will be needed for the ITER fusion tokamak, today’s Korea Times reports. The new technique will enable the production of more than 50 kilograms of tritium per year. While another isotope of hydrogen, deuterium, also a fusion fuel, occurs naturally, tritium, aside from very small trace amounts. can only be produced artifially. ITER will demonstrate fusion with the D-T reaction, which is the easiest reaction to create, requiring the least amount of energy in-put.

NFRI says that this new production technology will lower the cost of importing tritium for ITER, which currently stands at a cost of about $26,000 per kilogram.

Each of the ITER partners (U.S., Russia, Japan, Europe, India, China, South Korea) contributes about 9% of the cost of the tokamak project, not in money, but in hardware. South Korea is working on 10 procurement items, and tritium systems is one of the ten.

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