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Elon Musk Slams “Unknown Technology” Fusion; Here’s His Plan For Green Future
Elon Musk, the brain behind Tesla and SpaceX, seems unimpressed by the long-term uses of fusion energy, the far-fetched dream of bringing atoms together under extreme environments to produce green electricity. But we are still years away from achieving the long-deferred ambition. Here’s what Elon Musk thinks about fusion energy.
While the concept could put many climatic issues to rest, the world’s richest man isn’t impressed by the logistics and cost of the process. In a tweet, the billionaire wrote, "Fusion would be expensive energy, given difficulty of obtaining and transporting source fuel, plus maintaining the reactor."
"Far better to use the Sun — thermonuclear reactor with no need to refuel or service," he added.
Musk Has Plans For Greener Future
But he has a point! No matter how much researchers and scientists advocate fusion energy, they have yet to crack the code, as current reactors still need far more power to start than they can churn out, despite several decades into the research. According to Elon Musk, we already have a solution for a greener future.
"The primary solution to a sustainable energy future is solar/wind with batteries for when sun doesn’t shine or wind doesn’t blow, interconnected with conventional high voltage lines," Musk said in a follow-up tweet. "No unknown technology is needed!"
Is There An Alternative To Fusion Energy?
It’s a well-known fact that Musk’s Tesla heavily banks on solar energy and battery storage technologies, so his thoughts aren’t a big surprise. And regardless of whether there’s a financial incentive or not, his plan to aim for a renewable grid cannot be completely written off.
Musk hasn’t entirely rubbished the concept of fusion, but he thinks that there are better options to explore. "It’s cool and for sure can and should be done," he tweeted in 2021 after some MIT researchers claimed their compact fusion reactor was "very likely to work."
"But I suspect its best case will be more costly than wind & solar (aka big fusion reactor in sky)," he added at the time.
Rival Billionaires Not On Board With Musk
Other billionaires including Jeff Bezos, however, have their faith in fusion reactors for a greener future. Last year, there were reports that Bezos invested in a Canadian fusion energy startup called General Fusion. Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Virgin CEO Richard Branson have also placed their bets on fusion tech.
Every year researchers claim they are one step closer to achieving fusion, a completely renewable source of energy. However, there aren’t any significant developments to be seen. If it were to Elon Musk, we might be looking at other sources of renewable energy and battery storage tech.