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  • 16,000 m³ in volume, 30 metres in height and as many in width—the ITER cryostat is not only one of the world's largest vacuum chambers, it's also by far the most complex.

    Keeping it cold

    For keeping your coffee warm, there's nothing like a thermos—an ingenious and simple device invented at the end of the 19th century. In between the two walls o [...]

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  • Procured by the United States, manufactured by Hyundai in Korea, transported by DAHER (ITER's global logistics provider), the first Highly Exceptional Load—an electrical transformer—arrived on site on 17 January 2015.

    The lightest of the "heavy" loads

    The voyage got off to a start in mid-November in the industrial port of Ulsan, Korea—more than 9,000 kilometres from the ITER site. Two months later, in Januar [...]

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  • The spaceship that carries passengers on a quest for inhabitable planets in the 2014 blockbuster "Interstellar" is fuelled by compact tokamaks that also provide the vessel's electricity.

    Fusion and fiction

    In 1985—the very year that a collaborative international project in fusion was proposed by General Secretary Mikhail Gorbatchev to President Ronald Reagan—fusi [...]

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  • At the Industeel-Le Creusot plant in central France (a business unit of the global giant Arcelor-Mittal), some 450 different grades are available. At the top of the line are the steels that will be used in ITER components.

    In the forges of ITER

    Men of the Iron Age, long before the term was coined, accidently discovered that by adding a bit of carbon to molten iron, a harder and more durable metal was [...]

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Mag Archives

Assembly Building pillars, climbing ever higher

As ITER components arrive on site, their first stop will be the cleaning facility at the entrance of the Assembly Building. Then, in the vast hall of the Assembly Building, they'll be verified and—if necessary—pre-assembled before transfer to the Tokamak Pit for integration in the machine.

The vast, 6,000 m² Assembly Building will house a double overhead crane (with a combined lifting capacity of 1,500 tons) as well as huge custom-built assembly tools capable of manipulating components weighing hundreds of tons.

 
On the north side of the work site, two of the five levels of pillar are already in place. Work has just begun on the third level (one third-level pillar is visible in the photo). (Click to view larger version...)
On the north side of the work site, two of the five levels of pillar are already in place. Work has just begun on the third level (one third-level pillar is visible in the photo).
Since September 2014, work is underway on the metal structure of the building. One by one, 12-metre-tall steel pillars are set into place side by side and one on top of the other to reach 60 metres in height. The thickest weigh 23 tons.

On the north side of the Assembly Building basemat, work has just begun on the third level of pillars.