The OpenAI CEO said during an event in Davos this week that “We still don’t appreciate the energy needs of this technology,” which is expected to consume an enormous amount of electricity as it matures. “There’s no way to get there without a breakthrough. We need [nuclear] fusion or we need like radically cheaper solar plus storage or something at massive scale,” Altman said.
Altman and Microsoft are both backers of the startup Helion, which is trying to develop a nuclear fusion generator — considered the Holy Grail of clean energy. But after more than 70 years of research punctuated with limited breakthroughs, many experts expect that the world will be chasing that Holy Grail for decades longer. Luckily, solar energy is already the cheapest source of electricity in history — the world just needs better batteries to store it.
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