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The Colours of Energy - The cradle of new energy technologies

We have written an essay for the book created by Shell at its 100 years anniversary.

In this essay, the growth characteristics of various new energy technologies are compared, especially solar photovoltaics and nuclear fusion. The big difference between the two is the unit size of an energy generating device. As a fusion reactor is so much larger than a PV panel, this gives fusion more uncertainty in climbing the growth ladder.

Find the essay in the Shell 100 years book - search for: "The cradle of new energy technologies"

The other essays are worth the read as well.


In footnote 4 we state:
"The experimental fusion reactor presently under construction in the south of France, ITER, is designed to produce 500 MW of thermal fusion power – ten times more than the power needed to run the device. A worldwide collaboration shares its construction costs of more than €10 billion ($12 billion)."

This is not correct: 500 MW of fusion power needs 50 MW of heating power. The power required to generate this heating power is more (in the order of 200-300 MW).