There’s an article on NBCnews.com titled “Cheaper Than Coal? Fusion Concept Aims to Bridge Energy Gap” by Alan Boyle that reviews the current status of fusion research, and begins by looking at a new proposal by University of Washington team which is proposing a new kind of fusion reactor — which computer models suggest could actually work and cross the break-even threshold — called the ‘dynomak’ which according to the researchers could be built for $2.7 billion, compared to $2.8 billion for a coal plant of comparable size.
A member of this research team, Derek Sutherland, says that this new design is something of a departure from the traditional fusion reactor design, but not radically so. He told NBC News:
“We’re like the mainstream enough to benefit from their superior physics, but we’re different enough to address the economic issues facing fusion in general . . . Not too alternative, not too mainstream. Maybe it’s just right”
At the end of the article, Boyle covers some of the more ‘exotic’ alternatives to these more mainstream fusion projects and mentions the E-Cat saying:
An outside review of experiments involving the controversial E-Cat reactor reports evidence of “anomalous heat production.” That has raised hopes among E-Cat’s fans that cold-fusion technology — also known as low-energy nuclear reaction, or LENR — just might work. Critics have said the heat production is probably due to less exotic reactions that haven’t been properly accounted for, but this week’s report sides with the view that something nuclear is going on. For more, check out this report from ExtremeTech’s Sebastian Anthony.
A mention of the E-Cat in an almost positive light is quite an interesting and unusual thing to read from a mainstream news source.