Clean Energy | June 5, 2024

Xcimer Energy’s rakes in $100 million for commercial inertial fusion

Roodgally Senatus
ImpactAlpha Editor

Roodgally Senatus

The nuclear fusion breakthrough two years ago at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory was a milestone in the race to commercialize fusion energy. Scientists have since replicated net energy gain in fusion reactions, but sustained energy generation is still years away.

Denver-based Xcimer uses laser inertial confinement, which fuses atoms with high-powered lasers (rather than magnets) to replicate the power of the sun – the same approach Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory used to generate net energy.

Xcimer says the world’s “highest-energy laser system” is capable of producing up to 10 times the laser energy, at 10 times higher efficiency and over 30 times lower cost per joule, than the lab.

Xcimer is also drawing on laser research conducted by the Strategic Defense Initiative’s 1980s-era “Star Wars” program. 

Fusion race

The $100 million Series A funding will finance a Denver facility where Xcimer is building a prototype laser system for generating greater net energy gain in a fusion reaction.

“Xcimer has developed a game-changing approach to inertial fusion and assembled a team of the brightest minds in the industry to execute on it,” said Mark Cupta of Prelude Ventures, which backed the round alongside lead investor ​​Hedosophia, a UK-based VC firm. Also in the round: Emerson Collective, Breakthrough Energy Ventures and Lowercarbon Capital.

Nearly three dozen companies have raised more than $6.2 billion from private investors and governments to pursue a variety of approaches to fusion power. Xcimer last year secured a $9 million grant from the US Department of Energy.