Japanese fusion specialist to set up shop in Australia

A Japanese  nuclear fusion technology start-up, Ex-Fusion, is to establish a base in South Australia, following the signing of a memorandum of understanding with the University of Adelaide.

South Australia trade and investment minister Nick Champion said that Osaka-based Ex-Fusion will set up a wholly owned subsidiary in the state by the end of the year, to further develop its cutting-edge laser fusion energy technology.

Ex-Fusion, co-founded by Osaka University researchers, is working to commercialise laser-based nuclear fusion technology that fuses hydrogen isotopes to produce zero emissions energy for power generation.

The company said that the technology is “expected to make an important contribution to decarbonisation in the long term due to its ability to flexibly respond to base and peak load fluctuations in the power supply grids.”

Last year, it raised 261 million yen ($US1.9 million) from a Tokyo-based venture capital firm and Osaka University Venture Capital.

In December, Ex-Fusion signed a MoU with laser fusion firm HB-11 Energy and the University of Adelaide to assist and expedite laser and photonic research through shared facilities.

“For EX-Fusion to choose to call South Australia its home away from home, is testament to the innovative environment we’ve created in our State’s Capital,” said Champion.

“This investment along with the endorsement that has been provided by the Japanese Government – one of our biggest trading partners – creates significant opportunities for our local industries.The company’s cutting-edge green technology will support our transition to net zero as we work towards producing and delivering a global supply of clean hydrogen.”

Ex-Fusion Technology CEO, Kazuki Matsuo said the company had chosen South Australia for its “agile market access capabilities” and the ability to work closely with government and researchers.

“We look forward to seeing South Australia grow further as the green energy and space capital of Australia,” Matsuo said.

The company says Ex-Fusion Australia Pty Ltd will be established in Adelaide, which it describes as “a hub for pioneering companies, exciting new industries, and a progressive and prosperous society in Australia.”