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UW Crest with engineering background
March 30, 2023

Funding puts UW-Madison spinoff company Type One Energy on the path to commercial fusion

Type One Energy, a Middleton, Wisconsin-based fusion energy company with roots in the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s College of Engineering, recently announced its first round of seed funding, raising $29 million from investors. The company has also onboarded a new, highly experienced CEO.

Type One Energy Group’s FusionDirect program sets the path to directly commercialize scientifically mature stellarator technology without the need for a large proof-of-concept prototype. Photo: Business Wire.

Type One, founded in 2019 by a team of globally recognized fusion scientists and business leaders, is hoping to commercialize stellarator technology over the next decade. Stellarators are a type of fusion reactor that uses powerful magnets to confine ultra-hot streams of plasma in order to create the conditions for fusion reactions. Energy from fusion promises to be clean, safe, renewable power. The company is using advanced manufacturing methods, modern computational physics and high-field superconducting magnets to develop its stellarator through an initiative called FusionDirect.

Professor Emeritus David Anderson, who recently retired from the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and served for decades as the director of the Helically Symmetric eXperiment (HSX) at UW-Madison is vice president and chief engineer of Type One Energy. Chris Hegna, Harvey D. Spangler Professor in engineering physics, is vice president and head of stellarator plasma science for the company.

The company also recently hired Christofer Mowry as CEO. Mowry is former CEO of General Fusion and former senior advisor on fusion for Breakthrough Energy Ventures, a firm that invests in and scales up energy technologies with the potential to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions. It is also one of the new investors in Type One energy.

“Fusion is the ultimate energy source, and its successful commercialization will be a huge leap towards achieving clean and abundant energy for everyone,” says Carmichael Roberts, who co-leads Breakthrough Energy Venture’s investment committee. “Advances in stellarator science, including Type One Energy’s ability to execute a stellarator development project, provide the basis for a very exciting and promising path to practical fusion on the grid in the coming decades.”