UKAEA’s mission is to lead the commercial development of fusion power and related technology and position the UK as a leader in sustainable nuclear energy.
This is underpinned by five goals:
- Goal 1 - Maintain the UK’s position as a world leader in fusion research & development (R&D)
- Goal 2 - Enable economic growth & new high-tech jobs in UK industry
- Goal 3 - Grow the UK’s nuclear technology capability
- Goal 4 - Design the first fusion power plants
- Goal 5 - Develop Harwell and Culham sites as Science and Innovation Centres.
Nuclear fusion, the process that powers the Sun, can play a big part in a carbon-free energy future. UKAEA manages the UK fusion programme at the Culham Centre for Fusion Energy (CCFE) which is one of the world’s leading fusion research laboratories. Its scientists and engineers are working with partners around the globe to develop fusion as a new source of clean energy for tomorrow’s power stations.
UKAEA has hosted the JET (Joint European Torus) facility at Culham since its design started in 1973. First operation was in 1983 and since then it has set world records for plasma performance. UKAEA operates JET under a contract with the European Commission, with the science programme managed by the EUROfusion consortium. The MAST facility, also based at Culham, is leading the world in research into tight aspect ratio tokamaks, and is currently undergoing a major upgrade.
New facilities linked to its fusion research are now operational at Culham.