A new push for fusion power here in Burnaby: General Fusion’s Michel Laberge at TED2014


General Fusion is our own UBC startup venture in Burnaby. Founder Michel Laberge was a keynote speaker at today’s TEDTalk in Vancouver.

TED Blog

TED2014_DD_DSC_4789_1920 Michel Laberge. Photo: James Duncan Davidson

“The whole planet needs a lot of energy,” begins Michel Laberge, in an understatement. So far, he says, we’ve been running on fossil fuels, and it’s been difficult to find something as cost-effective to replace them. Laberge is a fan of nuclear power, which he thinks is the best solution to that problem in the long run.

There are two ways to produce nuclear power: fusion and fission. Right now, all of our nuclear plants use fission, where you take a big nucleus, like uranium, and break it apart. 

In fusion, by contrast, you take two very small nuclei, hydrogen, and push them together. As Laberge says, “This is nature’s way of producing energy. The sun and all the stars in the universe run on nuclear fusion.” The other reason to like it (the main reason really) is that a fusion power plant would be…

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