Director-General Barabaschi visits Japan
Japan is a very familiar place for ITER Director-General Pietro Barabaschi. His past position as the Director of the Broader Approach activities at the European Domestic Agency, Fusion for Energy, led him to visit Japan over 180 times. His latest stopover, however, was different—it was the first time he was visiting as Director-General of the ITER Organization.
Director-General Barabaschi was welcomed by Minister Moriyama Masahito from Japan's Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT). The Minister spoke of Japan's contributions to ITER through the fabrication of high-tech components and the participation of Japanese staff in the project. Minister Moriyama and Director-General Barabaschi also discussed the importance the JT-60SA tokamak to ITER, as that upgraded experiment prepares to study advanced modes of plasma operation.
The ITER Director-General exchanged with MEXT Minister Moriyama (right, front) and Japan's Head of Delegation to the ITER Council, Masuko Hiroshi (right, back).
A meeting with Masuko Hiroshi, Vice Minister for International Affairs and the Head of the Japanese delegation to the ITER Council, also took place.
Director-General Barabaschi also attended the STS Forum, a yearly event in Kyoto that brings together over 1,000 scientists and global leaders from around the world to discuss how science and technology can positively impact the future of civilization. Director-General Barabaschi participated in a panel on the prospects and challenges of fusion energy.
The annual STS Forum in Kyoto brings together scientists and policymakers. ITER Director-General Barabaschi participated in a panel on fusion energy.
A visit to the Naka Fusion Institute at the National Institutes for Quantum Science and Technology (QST) rounded out Director-General Barabaschi's visit to Japan. He met the staff of ITER Japan, visited two test facilities participating in ITER procurement, and stopped in at JT-60SA, where he gave encouragement to all the European and Japanese staff members who are currently working on the integrated commissioning of the device. Finally, the Director-General exchanged with QST President Koyasu Shigeo on how to more closely promote the integration between the ITER Organization and ITER Japan and how to attract greater numbers of young staff members to work at ITER.
On 3 October 2023, the ITER Director-General visited the QST Naka Fusion Institute, where he was enthusiastically welcomed by the staff of ITER Japan and the JT-60SA team.
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