Coil winding facility
Toward new activities
In August 2010, close to 13 years ago, construction work began on a vast workshop for the manufacturing of ITER's largest ring-shaped coils. Designed and financed by Europe, the Poloidal Field Coils Winding Facility was the first building to rise on the ITER platform. Since, it has been host to one of ITER's most spectacular and challenging industrial ventures: the step-by-step fabrication, under the responsibility of procuring agency Fusion for Energy, of four poloidal field coils ranging from 17 to 24 metres in diameter and from 200 to (nearly) 400 tonnes in weight. As the last two coils enter late-stage production activities at the far end of the assembly line, the rest of the building has become available for other tasks. On Monday 3 April, Fusion for Energy handed over approximately one-fourth of the shop floor to the ITER Organization for assembly and installation activities.
In the coming months, after a large door is created in the north wall facing the cryoplant, the ITER Organization will use the space previously occupied by the coil winding table and adjacent work station to proceed with thermal shield repairs. Later this year, in September, a second partial handover will extend the Organization's "exclusive area" to about half of the facility's space. In this newly acquired territory, ITER will set up the port plug test facility, whose components will arrive from Russia. By mid-2024, after the final coils PF4 and PF3 have been delivered and all coil-related activity has ended, a final handover will give the ITER Organization complete ownership of the building. At the far end, where the concrete slab can withstand pressures on the order of 42 tonnes per square metre, ITER will conduct divertor cassette assembly operations and other heavy-duty activities.
Thirteen years after Europe began manufacturing activities in the onsite Poloidal Field Coils Winding Facility, Fusion for Energy handed over approximately one-fourth of the shop floor to the ITER Organization. Pictured here are ITER Director-General Pietro Barabaschi and Fusion for Energy Acting Director (interim) Jean-Marc Filhol as they jointly sign the handover documents.
"More than a formal handover, what we are celebrating today is the quality of the work which has been and continues to be done in this building," said ITER Director-General Pietro Barabaschi before signing the official documents with his counterpart, Fusion for Energy Acting Director (interim) Jean-Marc Filhol.
Throughout the manufacturing process, knowledge and skills were acquired by dozens of different actors working in synergy to produce the largest superconducting coils ever designed.
The Poloidal Field Coils Winding Facility was not merely an industrial building, it was a place where unique tools and processes were refined and optimized, and where knowledge and skills were acquired by dozens of different actors working in synergy to produce the largest superconducting coils ever designed.
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