AM for EnergyIndustrial Additive ManufacturingNuclear EnergySustainability

TAE is 3D printing the future of fusion energy 

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TAE is a technology platform company on a mission to deliver safe, abundant, aneutronic, and carbon-free commercial fusion energy with hydrogen-boron fuel. Since its founding in California in 1998, TAE has built five generations of fusion platforms using a proprietary and scientifically proven approach to clean fusion power, which the company expects to commercialize by the early 2030s.

Formerly known as Tri Alpha Energy, the company’s reactor design relies on an advanced beam-driven field-reversed configuration (FRC), which combines features from accelerator physics and other fusion concepts in a unique fashion, and is optimized for hydrogen-boron fuel, also known as proton-boron and p-B11.

Through a partnership with EOS North America, TAE used additive manufacturing to develop design solutions and build prototypes for its next-generation fusion research reactors.

TAE is on a mission to deliver safe, abundant, aneutronic, and carbon-free commercial fusion energy with hydrogen-boron fuel.
Interior rendering of TAE’s fifth-generation fusion research reactor Norman, which operates at more than 70 million degrees Celsius.

Faster progress with less waste

With an enabling technology like additive manufacturing, TAE can build toward its goal sustainably without sacrificing speed or precision. Additive manufacturing helps accelerate TAE’s progress by offering greater design speed and to quickly print several iterations of components, generating fast resolutions to complex problems.

AM also doesn’t require traditional welding and inspections, eliminating hours of work compared to conventional manufacturing. The ability to cut the weight of some components in half, improves assembly, maintenance and ergonomics. Lighter-weight parts also mean less material is needed for manufacturing, reducing cost and environmental impact.

AM solutions are now also being evaluated to play a role in the future fusion supply chain. To meet global energy demand, nuclear fusion power plants will need to be built around the world – and the speed and economical production pipeline 3D printing can offer will be vital.

TAE is on a mission to deliver safe, abundant, aneutronic, and carbon-free commercial fusion energy with hydrogen-boron fuel.
A photo of a 3D printed research reactor component, at 2kg half the weight of what it would be with conventional manufacturing.
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