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24th ITER Council | En route to First Plasma, 63% of the work is done

ITER - do, 20/06/2019 - 22:18


The ITER Council has met for the twenty-fourth time since the signature of the ITER Agreement. Representatives from China, the European Union, India, Japan, Korea, Russia and the United States reviewed project status, performance metrics and the organizational changes that are planned to help the project prepare for the start of machine assembly next year.   The ITER Council is responsible for the promotion and overall direction of the ITER Organization and has the authority to appoint the Director-General, to approve the Overall Project Cost (OPC) and Overall Project Schedule (OPS), to approve the annual budget, and to decide on the participation of additional states or organizations in the project. Meetings are held at least twice a year, with representatives from every ITER Member.
The two-day meeting this week (19-20 June) started off with the renewal of Director-General Bernard Bigot's contract. In keeping with the decision of the Council in January 2019, Director-General Bernard Bigot officially formalized his acceptance of a second five-year term (beginning 5 March 2020) by signing a contract with Council Chair Arun Srivastava.
Another important point of business was examining the internal organizational chart proposed for the next phase of project execution—machine assembly. The ITER Council approved the reorganization, which reflects the transition from an engineering/manufacturing project focus to one that facilitates the execution of assembly, installation and construction on site. The ITER Organization plans to have the new organization in place for January 2020, just before Assembly Phase I begins officially with the installation of the cryostat base in the Tokamak Building (March 2020).
Performance metrics show that, today, project execution to First Plasma stands at 63 percent. More than 70 percent of the buildings and infrastructure required for First Plasma are in place on the ITER construction site in Saint Paul-lez-Durance, France.
Read the full press release in English or French.

Sweden gets organised to strengthen industrial participation in ITER

F4E Events - di, 18/06/2019 - 02:00
High-level meeting with F4E and IO participation takes places in Stockholm

Sweden gets organised to strengthen industrial participation in ITER

F4E Events - di, 18/06/2019 - 02:00
High-level meeting with F4E and IO participation takes places in Stockholm

On site | Through the eyes of a crane operator

ITER - ma, 17/06/2019 - 20:29

Sitting in his cabin 80 metres above the ground, Alex Dumonteil enjoys a most spectacular view. To the north, on a clear day, he can see as far as the Alpine ridge covered in eternal snow; to the south he has a clear view of the Sainte Victoire—the "mountain" that inspired Cézanne, Renoir, Kandinsky and several other art luminaries from the past two centuries.
Although he is well aware of the landscape's artistic references, Alex doesn't dwell on them. He has a job to do, and it is one that requires his constant attention.
Alex is one of eighteen crane operators on the ITER worksite. One glance to the control screen, another toward the crane hook visible through the glass floor of his cabin, the right hand on a joystick ... he spends eight hours a day lifting construction material and equipment and positioning the loads with utmost precision wherever they are needed.
Last week, Alex opened his cabin to Newsline, providing a unique opportunity to see the ITER worksite through the eyes of a crane operator.

F4E Director showcases ITER contribution and visits U.S. fusion R&D hubs

F4E Events - vr, 14/06/2019 - 02:00
F4E’s Director holds a keynote speech at SOFE about Europe’s ITER contribution and visits U.S. fusion facilities.

F4E Director showcases ITER contribution and visits U.S. fusion R&D hubs

F4E Events - vr, 14/06/2019 - 02:00
F4E’s Director holds a keynote speech at SOFE about Europe’s ITER contribution and visits U.S. fusion facilities.

Fusion shaping Europe’s Energy Future

F4E Events - wo, 12/06/2019 - 02:00
2019 Barcelona Energy Days looking into tomorrow’s challenges

Fusion shaping Europe’s Energy Future

F4E Events - wo, 12/06/2019 - 02:00
2019 Barcelona Energy Days looking into tomorrow’s challenges

MITICA beam source vacuum vessel installed

F4E News - di, 11/06/2019 - 02:00
F4E, De Pretto Industrie and Consorzio RFX successfully complete the task.

MITICA beam source vacuum vessel installed

F4E News - di, 11/06/2019 - 02:00
F4E, De Pretto Industrie and Consorzio RFX successfully complete the task.

Worksite | A frontier town at the frontier of science

ITER - ma, 10/06/2019 - 21:39



Like a frontier town of the American West, the ITER site grew from nothing to a thriving community of several thousand people in less than one decade. The original settlers waited almost five years to see the first buildings come out of the ground, but from then on development went very quickly. One by one, ITER acquired the attributes of a small town—roads and traffic lights, an infirmary and a fire brigade, restaurants, public transportation, law enforcement, waste collection ... and even a weekly newspaper.
Small-town ITER is an international enclave in a national territory. Although small (~180 hectares) it is very cosmopolitan; its denizens hail from more than 30 countries and speak some 40 different languages.
Entering the enclave requires a special passport in the form of an access badge. There are precisely 6,610 badge holders and an average of 5,000 entries per day, not counting visitors on business and  "tourists."
The ITER outpost is both residential and industrial. More than half of its daily population heads directly to the construction site, factories, or workshops; the other "inhabitants" enter offices in the stately Headquarters building or in more modest edifices scattered around town.
ITER is a boomtown that almost never sleeps. Office dwellers start early and often stay late, while construction workers are on a two-and-a-half shift schedule—some of them working into the wee hours of the morning to lay the groundwork for the next day's activities. Whether in offices, workshops, or partially completed buildings, a sense of urgency prevails.
Roads and dirt tracks crisscross the town and traffic is intense, with an average of 300 trucks passing through the gates of the enclave every day. Supporting the life of the town requires huge amounts of material—rebar to reinforce the concrete produced in the on-site batching plant, huge formwork panels, steel columns, pipes by the kilometre, tonnes of paint, and all the indispensable supplies for what is probably the largest construction project in Europe, if not the world.
Like other frontier towns, small-town ITER is a hub of activity in an otherwise sparsely populated region. The town itself is not very large but it hosts some of the most massive structures ever erected. Its landmark edifice, the ziggurat-like Tokamak Complex, will be 15 percent heavier than New York's Empire State Building when completed. More than 16,000 tonnes of steel rebar and 150,000 tonnes of concrete will have gone into its construction.
Electrical power must be managed; water for both drinking and industrial purposes distributed; waste collected, managed, and recycled whenever possible; roads and dirt tracks maintained; food and health services made available; and the "law," principally in the form of safety regulations, enforced.
For the moment only a fraction of the capacity of the electrical switchyard on site is being used, but as more and more plant systems come on line with requirements for ventilation and air conditioning, consumption will rise steadily. Soon, it will be equivalent to that of 12,000 homes, approximately 20 percent more than the nearby city of Manosque. The consumption of potable water, on the other hand, averages 16 litres per day/per person—considerably lower than the 150 litres that a citizen consumes on average (small-town ITER has a few showers but deliberately ignores bathtubs).
Industrial water is needed in huge quantities, however, for producing concrete (300 litres per cubic metre), for sprinkling on dirt tracks in the case of persistent dry weather (200 to 300 cubic metres per month), and for cleaning trucks, pipes and cement mixers—all in all an annual consumption in excess of 20,000 cubic metres, coming partly from the neighbouring Canal de Provence and partly from batching plant water recycling.
Waste in town is managed with environmental protection in mind. The "inert waste" generated by construction activity at the rate of 1,000 tonnes per month (essentially concrete chunks and residue) is transformed into construction aggregates at a plant off site. Other specific types of waste are managed and recycled according to strict regulations. Since painting operations began in the Tokamak Complex, for example, approximately 10 tonnes of empty paint pots, used rollers and chemical containers, and residues of resin are managed every month.
Small-town ITER is not a rowdy settlement: speed limits and traffic lights are respected and safety rules scrupulously observed. However, whenever necessary, the law is there to reprimand, punish or even, on extremely rare occasions, expel.
Whereas one is free to dress as one likes in the residential part of town, simple and strict rules apply to the construction site: long pants, protective shoes and goggles, gloves, reflective vests. And of course the hard hat—green for law enforcers, blue for managers, red for foremen and supervisors, white for workers, and yellow for visitors.
Most frontier settlements become attractive to tourists long after their heyday is over and they have turned into ghost towns. However, because small-town ITER is so unique and spectacular, it draws an average of 15,000 visitors every year—government officials, an occasional prince or princess, business executives, researchers, students and schoolchildren, pensioners, and vacationing families. Most of them discover the town's landmarks through the windows of a tourist bus. The privileged few—but they amount to hundreds—take the VIP tour inside the town's most stunning monuments.
These privileged "tourists" are a challenge to the green hats whose mission is to ensure that co-activity is carried out safely and smoothly, and that all occupational safety regulations are respected. But they acknowledge that visitors are important as they spread the word about the small frontier town at the frontier of science.
A frontier town would not be complete without a mayor and a sheriff. In small-town ITER, Laurent and Georges play the parts to perfection. Although hailing from different generations (George is long past retirement age), they are both veterans of large nuclear projects. Laurent likens his role to that of the "conductor" of a large symphonic orchestra playing an utterly complex sheet music; Georges is an enforcer as much as a facilitator—an old-school construction hand in a futuristic project.
The day will come when the dusty, bustling frontier settlement gives way to an immaculate research centre where lab coats have replaced hard hats and yellow vests. As the ITER Project writes history, the memory of the small town that nurtured its early years will fade. But its ancient dwellers will still be on hand to tell its story and turn it into an epic saga—which, in many ways, it was.

ITER Poloidal Field coil enters final phase of production

F4E News - wo, 05/06/2019 - 02:00
Europe in collaboration with China get ready to unveil the magnetic ring.

ITER Poloidal Field coil enters final phase of production

F4E News - wo, 05/06/2019 - 02:00
Europe in collaboration with China get ready to unveil the magnetic ring.

10 years strong | A French school with an ITER flavour

ITER - ma, 27/05/2019 - 17:31


The men and women who are building ITER come from all over the world, often with school-age children. They rightfully expect to be provided an adapted educational structure, one that would provide the benefits of an international curriculum while maintaining ties with their national system and language.
Establishing an international school near ITER was part of the French commitment as host to the project. For the French Ministry of Education, the creation of an educational establishment catering to students aged 3 to 18 and hailing from more than 30 nations was a tremendous challenge, both technically and intellectually. On 24 January 2011, when the school was officially inaugurated, the head of the public education service in the Aix-Marseille region considered that the French authorities had gone "as far as the Constitution would allow."
Although it was created to serve the needs of ITER, the International School of Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur (EIPACA) is part of the French public school system. As such, it is also open to "non-ITER" children, which contributes to broadening the experience of all students.
The objective from the beginning has been to provide a bilingual education—in French plus one of the ITER languages. Currently, six language sections are offered: Chinese, English, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish. Furthermore, from junior high school on, English speakers can choose to join the European Section where the courses are taught 80 percent in English.
From 130 students in 2007, the school has grown to 770 today (an average of 59 percent are from ITER families). After exponential growth in the early years, enrolment is now expanding at about 5 percent annually.
The "ITER school" was hosted at first by a high school in the city of Manosque, until a dedicated site could be built thanks to an investment of EUR 55 million from the Regional Council of Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur (PACA).
From 20 to 24 May, five days of celebratory events took place to celebrate 10 years in the school's permanent location.
"We are proud to be a strong and nurturing school for children from thirty countries who study in seven different languages," said Laure Béjannin, current director of the EIPACA International School. "Our commitment to the future of the school is complete. With the support of ITER and of the French Ministry of Education, we will no doubt lead our 770 students today—and our students in the future—to great achievements."
Learn more about the EIPACA International School in this presentation, or by consulting the website.

First-ever F4E clip about Vacuum Vessel now available

F4E News - di, 21/05/2019 - 02:00
The clip explains F4E’s work together with eight European companies and ITER Organization in the manufacturing of this huge structure.

First-ever F4E clip about Vacuum Vessel now available

F4E News - di, 21/05/2019 - 02:00
The clip explains F4E’s work together with eight European companies and ITER Organization in the manufacturing of this huge structure.

Open Doors Day | An intense and unforgettable experience

ITER - ma, 20/05/2019 - 20:07

Saturday was Jacques's birthday. At age 90, the long-retired engineer from Aix-en-Provence had only one item on his wish list: to visit ITER for a third time and "see the progress of the Tokamak." Jacques was lucky: his birthday this year coincided with the 14th edition of the ITER Open Doors Day—a twice-a-year opportunity for the public to take the full measure of the ongoing works on the ITER construction site in Saint-Paul-lez-Durance, southern France.
The Open Doors Day has come a long way since the event's inception in October 2011. The first edition had little to show: a "near-finished" Poloidal Field Coils Winding Facility, a "forest of pylons" in the electrical switchyard, and a 17-metre-deep excavation where installation work had just begun on the anti-seismic system of the Tokamak Complex.
Eight-and-a-half years later, the ITER installation is a massive presence. More than 70 percent of civil work to First Plasma has been completed, spectacular assembly tools are in place, and giant components are taking shape on site.
For the 800 visitors who passed through the worksite gates on Saturday, the experience was intense and unforgettable. As they walked from the Cryostat Workshop, where the base section of the cryostat is in the last stages of fabrication ... past the lower cylinder (now cocooned on site) ... through the lofty Assembly Hall ... and finally into the depths of the Tokamak Complex, they were able to take the full measure of ITER in both its scientific and industrial dimensions.
The success of an Open Doors Day rests on faultless organization¹, the dedication of dozens of volunteers, and a collective enthusiasm for explaining and sharing what ITER is about. All these pre-requisites and more were fulfilled by the participants in the 14th edition on 18 May.
Scientists traded the complex equations of plasma physics they are familiar with for simple and concrete explanations and examples accessible to the lay public; engineers discarded their technical jargon to convey the challenges of ITER construction.
For everyone involved the reward was in the eyes of the children exploring a 3D rendition of the ITER machine, or in the eyes of their parents gasping at the sheer size of the sub-assembly tools and the unique strangeness of the Tokamak Pit.
¹Open Doors Day is organized by the ITER Organization in close collaboration with the European Domestic Agency, Fusion for Energy, and its contractors Engage, Apave, Energhia, etc. Close to 50 volunteers participated in the 14th edition. Representatives of "Les petits débrouillards," a national network that promotes scientific and technical education, were also present to provide hands-on experiments on magnetism and electricity.

F4E and EFLs test TBM technology and equipment

F4E News - ma, 20/05/2019 - 02:00
F4E is working together with EFLs to test several TBM candidate technologies in order to demonstrate their performance and reliability.

Steel giants arrive on ITER site

F4E News - ma, 20/05/2019 - 02:00
The massive roof pillars of the Tokamak building are here.

F4E and EFLs test TBM technology and equipment

F4E News - ma, 20/05/2019 - 02:00
F4E is working together with EFLs to test several TBM candidate technologies in order to demonstrate their performance and reliability.

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