North Korean nuclear fusion claims dismissed

North Korea claimed yesterday that its scientists had succeeded in creating a nuclear fusion reaction, but experts doubted the isolated communist country actually had made the breakthrough in the elusive, clean-energy technology.

Fusion nuclear reactions produce little radioactive waste and some hope it could one day provide a virtually limitless supply of clean energy. US and other scientists have been experimenting with fusion for decades, but it has yet to be developed into a viable energy alternative.

North Korea's media, however, reported the feat on the "Day of the Sun" – a North Korean holiday marking the birthday of the country's founder, Kim Il-sung. Often, North Korea uses the occasions of holidays honouring Kim or his son, current leader Kim Jong-il, to make claims of great feats that are rarely substantiated.P