Trump's Tech Battle With China Roils Bill Gates Nuclear Venture
Tuesday January 1, 2019. 11:04 PM , from Slashdot
Add Bill Gates to the list of executives whose businesses have been ensnared by the Trump administration's battle with China over technology and trade. From a report: The tech tycoon and philanthropist said in an essay posted late last week that a nuclear-energy project in China by a company he co-founded called TerraPower LLC is now unlikely to proceed because of recent changes in U.S. policy toward China [Editor's note: the link may be paywalled; alternative source]. That leaves TerraPower, which had been working on the China project for more than three years, scrambling for a new partner and uncertain where it might be able to run a pilot of the nuclear reactor it has been developing, according to company officials.
Mr. Gates, TerraPower's chairman, helped start and fund the Bellevue, Wash., company, which incorporated in 2008, in a long-term bid to make nuclear reactors smaller, less expensive and safer than current nuclear energy sources. The company has been developing something called a traveling-wave reactor, which uses depleted uranium as fuel, something that TerraPower says can improve safety and reduce costs. Regulatory restrictions and limited federal funding made building the facility in the U.S. difficult and led TerraPower to look for partners abroad, Chief Executive Chris Levesque said in an interview.
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