UK Government Partners with Tech Giants to Bring Fusion Energy Testing to the Metaverse
The immersive environment will enhance the resilience of fusion energy testing, potentially connecting fusion power to the national grid in the early 2040s.
Advancing Fusion Energy with Metaverse Collaboration
The UK government is embarking on a groundbreaking fusion energy exploration, moving into the metaverse for testing and experimentation. Partnering with industry giants Intel and Dell and the University of Cambridge, the UKAEA is creating a digital twin of the STEP design, a Spherical Tokamak for Energy Production. By leveraging supercomputers and advanced AI predictive capabilities, the collaborative effort seeks to establish a robust and immersive virtual environment that mirrors the industrial metaverse.
Dr. Rob Akers, the Director of Computing Programmes at UKAEA, underlines the transformative potential of exascale supercomputing and the "AI era" in achieving the mission of connecting fusion power to the national grid by the early 2040s. These powerful technologies empower researchers to push the boundaries of STEP by incorporating enhanced robustness, flexibility, and resilience into the design.
The Concept of Exascale Computing
The collaboration utilizes exascale computing, a cutting-edge technology with supercomputers capable of performing up to one quintillion calculations per second. The immense computational power enables in-depth simulations and analyses vital for optimizing the fusion energy concept and making significant advancements in the field.
Dr. Paul Calleja, the Director of Research Computing Services at the University of Cambridge, emphasizes the ambition of UKAEA's mission to introduce clean fusion energy to the UK grid by the 2040s. To accomplish such a lofty goal, advanced computing and AI technologies are pivotal in fueling the virtual engineering effort. The industrial metaverse offers an innovative platform for engineers and designers to simulate complex designs in a virtual environment, promoting productivity and efficiency.
Integrating the STEP design into the industrial metaverse enables seamless collaboration among engineers and designers. Companies can efficiently explore potential solutions without wasting materials by testing various designs in 3D and engaging in virtual collaboration with colleagues.