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IFMIF/EVEDA – Engineering and validation of equipment in progress

F4E News - ma, 11/02/2019 - 01:00
The experimental facility hosting the world’s longest Radio Frequency Quadrupole (RFQ) accelerator prepares for upgrades.

IFMIF/EVEDA – Engineering and validation of equipment in progress

F4E News - ma, 11/02/2019 - 01:00
The experimental facility hosting the world’s longest Radio Frequency Quadrupole (RFQ) accelerator prepares for upgrades.

A new dawn rises on the ITER construction site

F4E News - do, 07/02/2019 - 01:00
The crown and bioshield of the Tokamak building are completed. More facilities are ready to receive equipment.

A new dawn rises on the ITER construction site

F4E News - do, 07/02/2019 - 01:00
The crown and bioshield of the Tokamak building are completed. More facilities are ready to receive equipment.

Chairman of European Parliament Budget Committee visits the ITER Site

F4E Events - wo, 06/02/2019 - 01:00
Jean Arthuis expresses his admiration for the project

Chairman of European Parliament Budget Committee visits the ITER Site

F4E Events - wo, 06/02/2019 - 01:00
Jean Arthuis expresses his admiration for the project

WEST invites East to its control room

F4E News - ma, 04/02/2019 - 01:00
Experts from Europe and Japan follow in real time plasma experiment performed 9620 km away.

WEST invites East to its control room

F4E News - ma, 04/02/2019 - 01:00
Experts from Europe and Japan follow in real time plasma experiment performed 9620 km away.

Steady at the helm | Bernard Bigot accepts a second term

ITER - ma, 28/01/2019 - 18:04


In a unanimous decision, the ITER Council has voted to reappoint Dr Bernard Bigot to a second five-year term as Director-General of the ITER Organization. The Council decision centred on two factors: the strong performance of the project in recent years under Dr Bigot's leadership, and the complex challenges that lie ahead as construction completes, massive tokamak components arrive onsite, and the stringent, carefully sequenced assembly and installation schedule kicks off in 2020.
Stakeholders internal and external have welcomed the announcement as a signal from both the Council and Bigot himself of the intent to ensure reliability and continuity for the demanding days that lie ahead.
In 2013, two years before Dr Bigot took the helm of the ITER Project, a report from the biennial Management Assessment had issued a warning: change course or risk project failure. By March 2015, the project was clearly at risk. The staggering complexity of the machine itself—compounded by the intricate international Procurement Arrangements under which companies on three continents would fabricate ITER's first-of-a-kind components—was taking its toll.
The rigour with which the new Director-General set about organizational reform showed that he understood both the high stakes involved and the structural changes needed. The central dilemma was daunting: how to ramp up the pace of construction and manufacturing at the same time as the project was undergoing exhaustive internal and external reviews of ITER's design, engineering, schedule, and cost—and all the while driving a revolution in project culture.
The results have been significant. Physical progress on every front has been matched by renewed optimism across the project. Once-sceptical stakeholders have been reassured. The project recently reached 60% completion through First Plasma in 2025.
Success, however, is not a one-man feat. Dr Bigot frequently reiterates the importance of teamwork and individual accountability at all levels. In his message last week to ITER staff and the seven ITER Members, announcing his acceptance of a second term, he set a familiar tone: "... the most important person for the success of the ITER Project is not the ITER Organization Director-General, but each of you, each of the stakeholders, each of our contractors and suppliers, each of us."
Read the press release in English or French.

Mapping 10 000 tasks for ITER Divertor Remote Handling

F4E News - vr, 25/01/2019 - 01:00
Europe presents to experts the intricacies of the system during the Preliminary Design Review.

Mapping 10 000 tasks for ITER Divertor Remote Handling

F4E News - vr, 25/01/2019 - 01:00
Europe presents to experts the intricacies of the system during the Preliminary Design Review.

European Parliament sets ITER as a tangible example of European added value

F4E Events - di, 22/01/2019 - 01:00
EU funding for ITER has generated growth and created new jobs

European Parliament sets ITER as a tangible example of European added value

F4E Events - di, 22/01/2019 - 01:00
EU funding for ITER has generated growth and created new jobs

Cryolines | Not just any pipes

ITER - ma, 21/01/2019 - 18:28


In order to produce and sustain plasmas ten times hotter than the core of the Sun, some essential elements of the ITER machine need to be cooled to temperatures only encountered in the void of outer space. Superconducting magnets and cryopumps will operate at a few degrees above absolute zero—~ 4 K, or minus 269 °C—and the thermal shield will be only slightly warmer (80 K, or minus 193 °C). These temperatures are obtained by circulating a steady flux of cryogenic fluid through a complex network of high-technology piping—the ITER cryolines.
Cryolines begin their long journey in the ITER cryoplant—where the cooling fluids are produced—and continue along an elevated bridge to the Tokamak Building, about 100 metres away. A section of cryoline can host up to six or seven "process pipes," each devoted to a specific fluid, flow direction or function.
Cryolines rarely run straight; instead they bend and turn to adapt to the topography of the worksite, or to snake their way through the congested spaces of the cryoplant and Tokamak Building.
ITER will have approximately 5 kilometres of cryolines ranging from 25 to 1000 millimetres in diameter. Part of India's contribution to ITER, the procurement is split between two companies, France's Air Liquide and India's INOXCVA.
Not just any material can be chosen to transport extremely low-temperature fluids. "Extreme cold makes most material brittle," says Nitin Shah, the technical responsible officer for the ITER cryolines. "As a consequence we need to use special-grade austenitic stainless steel, low in carbon and high in nickel and chromium."
Contraction is another challenge. When exposed to cold, materials retract—and when cold is extreme, contraction is significant. In the ITER cryolines, a 10-metre pipe will shrink in length by 3 centimetres when the cooling fluids begin to flow inside.
The solution for compensating such contraction comes in the form of steel bellows and flexible hoses, made out of an extensible material and placed at regular intervals along both the inner pipes and the outer jackets.
Like frozen food brought home from the supermarket, the cooling fluids flowing in the cryolines must be carefully insulated in order not to warm up during their journey from the cryoplant to the Tokamak Building and back. As the temperature gradient between the fluids and the outside environment is particularly high (on the order of 300 °C) the insulation of the cryolines is particularly sophisticated.
"There are three ways by which heat is transmitted from one environment to another: radiation, convection and conduction," explains Shah. To minimize transmission by radiation, the inner pipes of the cryolines are wrapped with between 30 and 60 layers of glass-fibre/aluminized Mylar insulation. Convection is dealt with by creating a high vacuum within the outer jacket.

And as for conduction, it occurs through solid contact. "As the inner pipes are attached to the inner wall of the cryoline jacket, transmission by conduction is not completely unavoidable," says Shah. "But we can reduce it considerably by using as few support pieces ('spacers') as possible, by optimizing their geometry and, of course, by choosing the least conductive material."
_To_150_Tx_As if all these challenging requirements were not enough, the ITER cryolines must also be particularly robust to resist the forces that could be exerted in case of a quench, which is the sudden loss of magnet superconductivity. During a quench the cooling fluids need to be transferred almost instantaneously from the machine to the quench tanks.
At Indian Domestic Agency contractors Air Liquide (France) and INOXCVA (India), fabrication is approximately 50 percent complete. Newsline recently visited the Indian facility located in the outskirts of Vadodara, an industrial city with a population of more than two million in the western state of Gujarat (see gallery below).
INOXCVA is a company with a quarter-century of experience in cryogenics, and whose Cryo Scientific Division is deeply involved in space applications, the nuclear industry, and all other major technologies involving cryogenics.
The manufacturing of spools—the 2- to 10-metre sections of cryoline that, once assembled at the ITER site, will form the cryoline network—began in 2017 in a specially constructed workshop complete with a clean room devoted to the most delicate and sensitive operations.
For the team at INOX, the challenge in filling the ITER order lay in the stringency of the technical specifications as well as in the quantity of spools to be produced—approximately 700 of them, each with a different shape.
"The ITER cryolines are all angles, bends and turns. Less than 20 percent of the spools we need to produce are straight," says Sanjay Gajera, the quality responsible officer at the INOXCVA facility in Vadodara.
In the large open space of the workshop, dozens of spools are in various stages of fabrication and, indeed, very few are straight. The factory receives the raw pipes from India and Europe (mainly the Ukraine); once cut to the required dimensions and cleaned, the welding process, which is exclusively manual, can begin. "Because of the complex shapes involved it is impossible to use automatic (orbital) welding machines," says Sanjay.
The inner pipes pass through the clean room to be wrapped in insulating tape multilayer insulation before being inserted into their outer jacket. At each stage of fabrication, the pipes are visually inspected and their internal surface and welds are explored by way of "boroscopy" (using a visualizing tool similar to an endoscope), X-rayed and cold tested.
At the end of this process, the spools are sealed at both ends under a slightly pressurized atmosphere of nitrogen to protect them from corrosion and impurities during storage and transport, and until they are assembled and welded on site at ITER by INOXCVA personnel.
The first batches of INOXCVA cryoline spools reached ITER in July 2017 after a one-month sea voyage from India. Installation in the cryoplant is underway; in the Tokamak Building work will begin this summer. The bridge between the two buildings will be in place in 2023, and the cooling fluids should begin circulating in the crydistribution network in 2024 in anticipation of First Plasma scheduled the following year.
Click here to view a video of the fabrication process at INOXCVA.  

Europe starts manufacturing the first set of ITER Divertor Cassettes

F4E News - vr, 18/01/2019 - 01:00
F4E sings deals with Walter Tosto, and CNIM-SIMIC consortium for the production of In-Vessel components.

Europe starts manufacturing the first set of ITER Divertor Cassettes

F4E News - vr, 18/01/2019 - 01:00
F4E sings deals with Walter Tosto, and CNIM-SIMIC consortium for the production of In-Vessel components.

F4E Director strengthens ties with Japanese partners

F4E Events - wo, 16/01/2019 - 01:00
As a step in maintaining and deepening working relationships with our Japanese colleagues, F4E Director Johannes Schwemmer visited Japan.

How to spot the leaks in ITER’s vacuum systems?

F4E News - wo, 16/01/2019 - 01:00
F4E is on a mission to detect and localise them.

F4E Director strengthens ties with Japanese partners

F4E Events - wo, 16/01/2019 - 01:00
As a step in maintaining and deepening working relationships with our Japanese colleagues, F4E Director Johannes Schwemmer visited Japan.

How to spot the leaks in ITER’s vacuum systems?

F4E News - wo, 16/01/2019 - 01:00
F4E is on a mission to detect and localise them.

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