Fusion Budget 2015: The Omnibus bill passed, Fusion budget lives to fight another year

Posted by Rezwan Razani on Feb 16, 2015 at 10:30 AM
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Good news from the Capitol regarding the fusion budget:  The Omnibus bill passed last year and the fusion budget is in place.

Thank you to Mark Haynes for this news and the following links and information:

Overview of the Budget from the DOE

For a good overview of this fiscal year’s budget (i.e. the numbers included in the Omnibus bill) and the President’s request for FY16, check out this presentation by Ed Synakowski from the Office of Science: “The Administration’s Proposed Budget for Fusion Energy Sciences in FY 2016

Relevant Language

Below please find the explanatory language relevant to fusion included in the FY15 Omnibus funding bill…We owe our supporters in Congress a great deal of gratitude for the positive outcome here.  Please take a moment to send a quick “thank you” note to those who you may have visited during Fusion Day or have otherwise contacted in support of fusion research. 

Here are a few related links about the overall omnibus bill and process:



Fusion Energy Sciences. The agreement accepts the new proposed budget structure for fusion energy sciences and provides funding accordingly. Unless specifically contravened in this agreement, references in the House report using the old budget structure shall stand. The agreement further directs the Office of Science to submit to the Committees on Appropriations of the House of Representatives and the Senate not later than 180 days after enactment of this Act a report on the contribution of fusion energy sciences to scientific discovery and the development and deployment of new technologies beyond possible applications in fusion energy.

Within available funds, the agreement provides not less than $70,220,000 for the National Spherical Torus Experiment, not less than $79,950,000 for DIII-0, and not less than $22,260,000 for Alcator C-Mod. The Office of Science is advised that fiscal year 2016 will be the final year of funding for Alcator C-Mod, consistent with the Fusion Energy Sciences Advisory Committee strategic planning and priorities report under all budget scenarios, and is directed to plan for an orderly shutdown following fiscal year 2016. The Office of Science is further directed to seek community engagement on the strategic planning and priorities report through a series o f scientific workshops on research topics that would benefit from a review of recent progress, would have potential for broadening connections between the fusion energy sciences portfolio and related fields, and would identify scientific research opportunities. The Department is directed to submit to the Committees on Appropriations of the House of Representatives and the Senate not later than 180 days after enactment of this Act a report on its community engagement efforts.

The agreement provides $216,062,000 for burning plasma science foundations, $38,956,000 for burning plasma science long pulse, and $59,682,000 for discovery plasma science. In addition to these funds, the agreement provides $2,500,000 to continue high energy density laboratory plasma science at the Neutralized Drift Compression Experiment-II and $300,000 for the National Undergraduate Fellowship Program to support the study of plasma physics.

The agreement provides $150,000,000 for ITER, o f which not less than $125,000,000 is for in- kind hardware contributions and up to $25,000,000 is for cash contributions to the ITER Organization.


Inertial Confinement Fusion and High Yield -The agreement provides $512,895,000. Within these funds, $68,000,000 is for Omega at the University o f Rochester and $329,000,000 is for the National Ignition Facility (NIF). The NNSA is directed to provide to the Committees on Appropriations of the House of Representatives and the Senate not later than 90 days after enactment of this Act an assessment on whether the likelihood of achieving ignition at the NIF has increased since December 2012 and the level of confidence that the NNSA will achieve ignition at the NIF by December 2015.

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