"California Fires up Laser Fusion Machine"

"A tentative first step towards an era of clean, almost limitless energy will take place today with the opening of a giant facility designed to recreate the power of the stars in an oversized warehouse in California.

The $3.5bn National Ignition Facility (NIF) sits in a 10-storey building covering three football fields and will harness the power of lasers to turn tiny pellets of hydrogen into thermonuclear energy.

If the machine works as planned, it will become the first to generate more energy than it consumes, a feat that could pave the way for commercial laser fusion power stations and an end to the world's energy security problems."

Ian Sample reports for The Guardian May 28, 2009.

Friday, May 29, 2009