We Have Ignition: Bay Area Innovation Engine Goes Nuclear
The Bay Area’s global innovation and technological dominance was on full display this week when Bay Area Council member Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory announced a major breakthrough in the decades-long push to create nuclear fusion. For the first time ever, LLNL scientists at the National Ignition Facility were able to generate more energy from a contained fusion reaction than it took to ignite it. The breakthrough LLNL has potentially significant implications for the use of fusion power as a clean, reliable energy source, but scientists caution that commercial large-scale applications are still decades away.
The discovery highlights the critical importance of federal funding into the kinds of basic research taking place at LLNL and other labs around the region. LLNL Director Kim Budil serves on the Board of Directors of the Bay Area Science and Innovation Consortium (BASIC), a science and technology affiliate of the Bay Area Council and Bay Area Council Economic Institute that brings together leaders from the region’s university, national laboratory and business communities to facilitate collaboration and address key issues and opportunities impacting the region’s research base and its ability to support technology-led growth. Read more about fusion breakthrough>>