The International Conference on Fusion Reactor Materials (ICFRM-20) has initiated, after its inaugural session, its work sessions, which will take place throughout this week. This conference, with over 380 people registered, is the main forum for debate between experts on materials with applications to the future fusion energy power plants. This edition, organised by CIEMAT and the University of Granada, has over 30 activities, including oral sessions and poster sessions.

The speakers at the inaugural session agreed on the significance of researching the materials of this specific field, particularly referring to the IFMIF-DONES project, key for the qualification of such materials, that will be built in Escúzar, Granada. The importance of fusion was also highlighted as a safe, clean, and inexhaustible source of energy, being hydrogen its fuel.

The President of ICFRM, Eberhard Diegele, participated in the inaugural session as moderator. Other attendees at this session were the Regional Minister for Economic Transformation, Industry, Knowledge and Universities of the Andalusian Regional Government, Rogelio Velasco, the Secretary General for Research of the Ministry of Science and Innovation, Raquel Yotti, the Director of CIEMAT, Carlos Alejaldre, and the Director of the IFMIF-DONES Consortium, Angel Ibarra. This session included the invited talk ‘Fusion materials – can Europe afford business as usual?’ by the Deputy Director General of the European Commission, Massimo Garribba, responsible for EURATOM coordination policies. The ICFRM conference, organized every two years, shows the advances in science and materials technologies with which the different parts of future fusion reactors will be built, qualified for operating under extreme physical and chemical conditions. In the upcoming days, over 300 world-wide leading experts will participate at ICFRM-20 and will debate about the nine areas of interest in this field through a number of thematic panels. There will be three prizes granted to the best contributions presented at the poster sessions.