Zap Energy nets $160M Series C to advance its lightning-in-a-bottle fusion technology Meczyki.Net

Fusion Startup to abuse Energy has reached two milestones that could move it forward in the race to offer low-cost, carbon-free energy – a $160 million Series C round and a successful test of a prototype fusion reactor that is en route to a commercial version. can pave.

Fusion Power has become an unlikely investor favorite as carbon emissions continue to rise and the effects of climate change become more apparent. We’ve been trying to harness the power of the Sun to produce energy for many years, but after tens of billions of dollars and decades of research, fusion is out of reach.

Still, clever new approaches to incorporate hot plasma – which burns at over 100 million degrees Celsius – have brought fusion power closer to reality. Investors are flocking to the area, hoping that advances made by continued research and increasingly sophisticated computer simulations will eventually help pull Fusion away from a long string of failures.

Zap Energy’s oversubscribed Series C was led by LowerCarbon Capital. New investors include Breakthrough Energy Ventures, Shell Ventures, DCVC and Valor Equity Partners. Existing investors Add, Energy Impact Partners and Chevron Technology Ventures also contributed to the round. The startup’s core technology grew out of research conducted at the University of Washington and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

Typically, fusion power generates electricity by fusing hydrogen isotopes (either deuterium or tritium) into helium. This process releases neutrons, which are then captured to generate heat and spin the turbine. Atomic nuclei do not like to fuse, so to close them close enough for fusion, nuclear scientists use extreme pressure and heat, creating a fourth state of matter known as plasma.