Fusion Power Associates
2 Professional Drive, Suite 249
Gaithersburg, MD 20879
phone: (301) 258-0545
fax: (301) 975-9869
e-mail: FusionPwrAssoc@aol.com
web: http://fusionpower.org

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FY 2007 Budget Submitted to Congress

February 6, 2006

President Bush submitted his Fiscal Year 2007 budget requests to Congress on February 6. Within the Department of Energy (DOE) budget, the President requests full support for the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) fusion engineering test facility, to be built in Caderache, France. ITER is a joint venture of seven Parties: China, European Union, India, Japan, Korea, Russia and the United States. The budget proposes to slash other domestic fusion energy programs, particularly those aimed at using lasers and other pulsed power sources to produce fusion by inertial confinement. Some magnetic confinement fusion activities not directly connected to ITER are also targeted for reductions.

The President proposes a budget of $319 million for the DOE's Office of Fusion Energy Sciences (OFES), an increase of $31 million over the $288 M available for FY 2006. An increase of $35 M (to $60 M) is proposed for ITER, resulting in a proposed decrease of $4 M in the balance of the U.S. domestic fusion program within OFES. The President also proposes a budget of $451 M for inertial confinement fusion within the DOE's weapon's program, a decrease of $93 M.

Within the inertial confinement fusion program, the budget proposes to eliminate, in its entirety, $48 M for High Average Power Lasers ($25 M), Krypton Flouride laser research at the Naval Research Laboratory ($15 M), extended operations at the Z facility at Sandia National Laboratories ($6 M), and laser work at Ohio State University ($2 M). The budget also proposes to eliminate $32 M for acceleration of the OMEGA EP project at the University of Rochester ($22 M) and other projects at the University of Texas, University of Nevada, Sandia and elsewhere ($26 M).

Within the OFES budget, the DOE proposes to reduce funding for Heavy Ion Fusion and High Energy Density Physics by $4 M, (to a level of $12 M), to reduce Innovative Confinement Concepts research by $2 M (to a level of $20 M), and to reduce funding for fusion materials research by $2.4 M (to a level of $4.7 M). Other elements of the OFES program in support of ITER receive modest increases.

Details of the FY 2007 budget requests are posted at http://fire.pppl.gov