First practical use for nuclear fusion could help cancer treatment

Radioisotopes are used in radiation therapy for breast cancer

Mark Kostich/Getty Images

The first useful application of fusion reactors may be to create radioactive isotopes for cancer treatment or medical imaging rather than to generate energy, claims a UK start-up firm.

Scientists and engineers have worked on building a fusion reactor for a century, and a practical fusion power station is still thought to be decades away.

But Astral Systems is working on tiny fusion reactors that don’t attempt to generate large amounts of power, or even to equal the amount of …


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