Home Industry Freemelt conducts feasibility study on the use of tungsten in fusion technology

Freemelt conducts feasibility study on the use of tungsten in fusion technology

The Swedish company Freemelt has been commissioned by a North American customer to conduct a feasibility study on the processing and application of tungsten in fusion technology.

The energy industry is undergoing significant change, driven by technological advances and a growing awareness of the need for sustainable, fossil-free energy sources. Fusion energy in particular has attracted great interest as a potential solution. By the end of 2023, a total of USD 6.21 billion had been invested in private and public fusion energy projects worldwide. Governments in the US, Japan, Germany and the UK have announced programmes to support the commercialization of fusion energy. It is predicted that the first fusion power plant will be feeding electricity into the grid before 2035.

Freemelt CEO Daniel Gidlund comments: “I’m thankful that another North American customer has chosen Freemelt’s E-PBF technology. This order further confirms Freemelts unique experience and capabilities of printing tungsten and it expands our footprint in North America, a market experiencing substantial growth within our target industries, Energy, Defense, and MedTech. Feasibility studies like this, are important for Freemelt’s commercialization as they are generated by high-demanding industrial applications suitable for E-PBF technology and will over time result in orders for the industrial machine, eMELT.”

Tungsten is a critical material for the fusion energy industry due to its unique properties such as high density, strength and resistance to extreme temperatures and wear. However, conventional manufacturing of tungsten components is difficult and costly, especially when the highest material properties are required. Additive manufacturing offers a promising solution to these challenges, as it enables the production of tungsten components with complex geometries that are difficult or impossible to achieve using traditional methods. In addition, additive manufacturing can reduce material waste, shorten production times and enable more flexible manufacturing processes.

Freemelt’s E-PBF (Electron Beam Powder Bed Fusion) technology is particularly attractive as it enables the efficient production of tungsten components with fewer design constraints while achieving the highest material properties. This makes it an ideal choice for the production of critical components for the fusion energy industry.

“Further, this order confirms the critical role Freemelts E-PBF technology plays for high-demanding materials such as tungsten for use in Fusion Energy powerplants. Providing components for Fusion Energy applications is particularly challenging due to the harsh conditions involved, which is why it is especially rewarding that Freemelt has earned the trust to support this customer in this project. The integration of our E-PBF technology with tungsten manufacturing has the potential to significantly advance the commercialization of Fusion Energy production”


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