North Korean nuclear fusion claims dismissed
Cahal Milmo is the chief reporter of The Independent and has been with the paper since 2000. He was born in London and previously worked at the Press Association news agency. He has reported on assignment at home and abroad, including Rwanda, Sudan and Burkina Faso, the phone hacking scandal and the London Olympics. In his spare time he is a keen runner and cyclist, and keeps an allotment.
Thursday 13 May 2010
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
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