US steel producer Nucor has partnered with Helion to develop a 500MW nuclear fusion power plant.

Nucor has committed to investing $35m in Helion to accelerate fusion deployment. The two companies have set a time frame and aim to begin operations at the plant by 2030.

The clean electricity generated from the fusion process will be fed to one of Nucor’s steel-making facilities.

Fusion power can revolutionise steel manufacturing operations through baseload zero-carbon electricity. With nuclear fusion, Nucor aims to become the cleanest steel producer globally.

Nucor chair, president and CEO Leon Topalian stated: “Nucor continues to position itself as a leader in developing clean energy solutions to decarbonise the industrial sector. This agreement with Helion, along with recent investments in clean energy, can change the entire energy landscape and forever change the world, embracing a clean energy future we could have hardly imagined a few years ago.

“We believe in the technology Helion is building and are proud to make this investment.”

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Helion has previously achieved milestones such as building six working fusion prototypes and reaching 100-million-degree plasma temperatures.

It is currently building its seventh prototype, which is expected to demonstrate the first electricity generation from fusion.

Helion CEO David Kirtley stated: “We are passionate about helping the world reduce its dependence on carbon-based energy sources with abundant, clean fusion power.

“We are proud to have investment from Nucor and to have the opportunity to work together on this project. Their commitment to providing their customers with the lowest embodied carbon steel and steel products available makes them a great fit for deploying 500MWe [megawatt electrical] of fusion power.”