Is the Fusion Manufacturing Challenge open to submissions from outside the US? From outside the United Kingdom?

Yes. The Fusion Manufacturing Challenge is an international challenge and respondents from all over the world are encouraged to participate.

Do I need to have a prototype before I can participate?

No. While technologies closer to commercial implementation are preferred, all maturities are eligible to participate in the Fusion Manufacturing Challenge.

Can I participate in the Fusion Manufacturing Challenge if my technology has never been used for an energy application?

Yes. UKAEA and Commonwealth Fusion Systems are interested in all approaches which have the potential to deliver cutting-edge performance, regardless of where the technology originated. Companies with expertise in large-scale manufacturing (such as ship building) or high precision applications (such as aerospace) are welcome to participate in this Challenge. 

I don’t know if my bonding technology is suitable for a radiation environment. Can I still participate in this Challenge?

Yes. While the strongest interest is in technologies that are immediately suitable for use in fusion energy technologies, UKAEA and Commonwealth Fusion Systems are also interested in promising approaches from outside the energy sector. Those new approaches may not have been fully qualified for use in a fusion energy technology. In that case, UKAEA and Commonwealth Fusion Systems will explore what steps are needed for demonstrating suitability for this application.

What kinds of conditions are generated in and around a tokamak?

  • Temperatures: exceeding 100 million °C
  • Magnetic fields: approximately 13 teslas
  • Radiation from: electrons, neutrons and ionsHeat fluxes
  • Potential exposure to corrosive coolant

How do I protect my intellectual property (IP)?

All submissions to the Fusion Manufacturing Challenge must be non-confidential. All submissions will be screened for confidential information and any submission containing confidential information will not be viewed by the judging panel. 

Respondents selected as winners will enter into discussions with UKAEA and Commonwealth Fusion Systems to determine how the parties might work together. During that time, appropriate confidentiality agreements can be established between all relevant participants to protect IP. If a business relationship cannot be established, respondents can exit negotiations with their IP intact.

Can I submit more than one response?

Yes, individuals and companies are welcome to submit more than one response for this Challenge. Please use your response to describe a single technology for a single focus area. If you have technologies for more than one focus area to propose, please submit a response for each technology.

Can I see an example of an effective response?

Each Challenge, response and judge are unique. A response for a particular Challenge might be highly effective for one judge but less so for another. Instead, here are some tips to keep in mind when preparing your response for this Challenge:

  • Make sure your approach is in scope for the Challenge. Unobvious solutions are always welcome but the approach should still be within the area(s) of interest.
  • Stay focused. Keep the information you provide relevant to the question asked and to the project. Other use cases might show adaptability but keep your focus on the application in question.
  • Be sure to balance technical and business details. Responses to Challenges should have a good blend of both.
  • Avoid jargon when possible and briefly explain it when it can’t be avoided. Judges can be from many different specialties: academia, technical, marketing, business development, executives. Make sure your response is accessible to a broad audience.

I’m an academic researcher. Can I participate?

Submissions from academics and academic labs are welcome. Academic respondents are strongly encouraged to consider how their technology could be developed into a commercial product, either as a spin-off company or in partnership with an external manufacturer.

I’ve got a technology to make use of a fusion reactor. Am I eligible to participate?

While novel uses of fusion reactors are interesting, they are out of scope for this Challenge. Eligible submissions should be centered on one of the two focus areas for this Challenge: technologies for bonding materials and non-destructive inspections.

Who will evaluate responses?

All eligible responses for the Fusion Manufacturing Challenge will be reviewed by a team of experts from UKAEA, Commonwealth Fusion Systems, and select subject matter experts.