The purpose of this workshop is to address the following questions to help inform and frame the proposed new program:
What are the most compelling examples of transformative and off-roadmap R&D opportunities to enable commercially viable fusion energy, especially in two key areas:
Advancing the performance of innovative fusion concepts with a plausible path toward timely, commercially viable fusion energy
Catalyzing new efforts to develop enabling technologies for fusion power plants with reduced size and nameplate generation capacity (see RFI), leveraging the expertise and experience of R&D communities both within and beyond mainstream fusion
What programmatic mechanisms can incentivize more cooperation and mutual benefit between the public and private sectors, and maximize cost-effectiveness of fusion development?
What T2M and/or TEA (techno-economic analysis) activities can ARPA-E and its awardees pursue to build the runway for fusion-energy development? Examples could include (but are not limited to) conducting market analysis, serving as a technical resource for eventual regulatory decision-making, and educating/engaging the full energy ecosystem in appropriate ways (especially private investors, philanthropic foundations, and public-interest advocacy groups)?
The meeting's output will help direct the actions of ARPA-E towards the most promising and appropriate high risk, high return R&D funding opportunities and management strategies.