writes, "China claims to have carried out a successful test of its experimental thermonuclear fusion reactor. But what exactly made this test 'successful' is not clear. From the article: 'Xinhua cited the scientists as saying that deuterium and tritium atoms had been fused together at a temperature of 100 million degrees Celsius for nearly three seconds. The report did not specify whether the device... had succeeded at producing more energy than it consumed, the main obstacle to making fusion commercially viable.'"
China is a participant in the 10-nation ITER project to build a fusion reactor in the south of France by 2015. The article quotes the research head of ITER as saying, "It was important for China to show that it is part of the club. Here are English language versions of the Chinese news release: announcement