The Passions of a Fusioneer

By Romi Mahajan, CEO, ExoFusion

Dr. Mike Kotschenreuther is Chief Scientific Officer and Co-Founder of ExoFusion, but no title could do him justice.  It is no exaggeration to say that he was the catalyst for forming the company and that it prospers largely because of Kotschenreuther’s inexhaustible supply of ideas on how to accelerate the arrival of Commercially Viable Fusion (CVF).

A product of Johns Hopkins and Princeton, he got his PhD absurdly early and has for more than four decades played a fundamental role in Plasma and Fusion physics.  A colleague at another company told me that he is the “Michael Jordan of fusion.”  When I told him this, he laughed- he isn’t interested in marketing hyperbole or believing that he’s the only one that gets it, but he is supremely confident in his knowledge of the physics- and the physics-based constraints- of CVF.

The clinical and scientific view gives way, however, to an incredible optimism.  That is why we decided to do ExoFusion and to engage with investors.  In a few years, we’ve developed fundamental patents around our super-XT divertor ™ and novel liquid metals for Plasma-Facing Components and other applications.  We’ve built relationships with key customers and partners and see the bogey in sight.  He has an assimilative approach that combines Physics, Engineering, Metallurgy, and Software-Development.

As Kotschenreuther points out, hyperbole has no place in fusion. We have to assess the science fairly and to understand where we are, and which routes are the best ways to move forward.  Nor in his opinion are silos good.  We have to look at the holistic enterprise and not look at it piecemeal.

No one can get into the world of fusion and not quickly become passionate.  The balance between passion and raving optimism is hard to manage.  Dr. Kotschenreuther does it with aplomb.

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