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Building Iter

The construction of the seven-storey, 400,000-tonne Tokamak Complex is underway. (Click to view larger version...)
The construction of the seven-storey, 400,000-tonne Tokamak Complex is underway.
At the heart of the ITER scientific installation is the Tokamak Complex, a 400,000-tonne edifice composed of the Tokamak, Diagnostic and Tritium buildings.

Eighty metres tall (including basement levels), 120 metres long and 80 metres wide, the Tokamak Complex will dominate the ITER platform when it is completed. The seven-storey structure will house not only the ITER Tokamak, but also more than 30 different plant systems that are necessary for the machine's operation.

The Tokamak Complex is a nuclear-rated structure of reinforced concrete, supported on aseismic isolators. The roof is 60 metres above ground level; the basement floor is approximately 11 metres below. The mid-plane of the machine has been located approximately at the level of the platform.

Construction will require 16,000 tonnes of rebar, 150,000 m³ of concrete, and 7,500 tonnes of steel for the building structures. The European Domestic Agency awarded the civil works contract in December 2012 to the French-Spanish consortium VFR (comprising French companies VINCI Construction Grands Projets, Razel-Bec, Dodin Campenon Bernard, Campenon Bernard Sud-Est, GTM Sud and Chantiers Modernes Sud, and the Spanish firm Ferrovial Agroman). The construction contract signed for the Tokamak Complex also includes the construction of the ITER Assembly Building; the radio frequency heating building; areas for heating, ventilation and air conditioning; a cleaning facility and site services building; the cryoplant compressor and coldbox building; the control buildings; the fast discharge and switching network resistor building; and three bridges.

Following the completion of Tokamak Complex foundations in August 2014, a 1.5-metre-thick, 9,300 m² basemat is now in place and work on the walls and floors has begun. As construction proceeds, tens of thousands of embedded plates will be cast into the concrete of the floors, walls and ceilings of the different levels of the building to provide anchoring for the systems and equipment.

A second building consortium—comprising Cofely Axima, Cofely Ineo and Cofely Endel (part of the GDF Suez Group) and the M +W Group GmbH—has been awarded the contract for building services, covering the design, supply, installation and commissioning of the mechanical and electrical equipment for the Tokamak Complex and surrounding buildings (heating and ventilation, fire protection, power supply, lighting, handling equipment ...). These works will begin as soon as access is possible.

Tokamak Complex Facts:

  • Construction: 5-6 years
  • Amount of steel reinforcement: 16,000 tonnes
  • Concrete required: 150,000 cubic metres
  • Thickness of basemat: 1.5 metres
  • Number of stories: 7
  • Total weight (buildings, equipment and machinery): 400,000 tonnes
  • Contractor: French-Spanish consortium VFR (VINCI Construction Grands Projets, Razel-Bec, Dodin Campenon Bernard, Campenon Bernard Sud-Est, GTM Sud, Chantiers Modernes Sud, Ferrovial Agroman)