Fusion Future: the journey to date and the road ahead including Australian proton-boron fusion

PresenterDr Adi Paterson, Advisor and Board Member, HB11 Energy.

A hybrid event (webinar and in-person meeting in Sydney).

12:30 pm AEST Wednesday 12 July 2023

Venue: AINSE Theatre, ANSTO, New Illawarra Road, Lucas Heights, NSW 2233 and online webinar. 

Cost free.

Video of Adi Paterson’s presentation is available at https://youtu.be/qiZhi_CTQtU


The two major approaches to Fusion: magnetic and inertial confinement will be described.  Australia must develop and enhance strategic capabilities in fusion energy to ensure we are an effective contributor to the next generation of low carbon energy dense sources of electricity and process heat. Key milestones in fusion, to date, will be used to illuminate the path that lies ahead.

There are significant challenges in the global and local setting. Current critiques of the multi-country ITER program will be explored.  In Australia the exit of ANU from national facility scale magnetic fusion was precipitated by the sale of the Stellarator to China in 2018.

In contrast, the huge growth of international of fusion entrepreneurship, new entrants and key national actors must be is an important backdrop to stimulate Australian fusion activities including the prospect of a National Laser Centre.

The advantages of laser inertial fusion will be explored through the lens of the proton-boron fusion mechanism. The utility of this fusion reaction, which does not emit neutrons and uses abundant, safe materials for fuel, represents a good platform for our national work and international collaboration. Ten to Twenty Petawatt-class lasers are coming down the cost curve. Net energy product is a reasonable prospect, from recently published results. Australia is poised to re-enter the global quest made possible by Mark Oliphant’s observations in 1932.

About Dr Adi Paterson

Adi Paterson

Adi Paterson PhD (Engineering) is Principal of Siyeva Consulting and a Non-Executive Director of HB11 Energy.  B11 Energy is developing Laser Hydrogen Boron-11 fusion to generate electricity using laser-ignited non-thermal fusion. He was CEO of Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) from 2009-2020 where had oversight and responsibility for ANSTO’s multi-faceted portfolio of activities including developing Australia’s formal relationship with ITER. He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (elected in 2009), a Honorary Fellow of Engineers Australia and a Fellow of the Academy of Science of South Africa and the South African Academy of Engineering.