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Of Interest

See archived entries

Council takes important technical and managerial decisions

 (Click to view larger version...)
Seven years to the day after the signature of the ITER Agreement at the Elysée Palace in Paris on 21 November 2006, the ITER Council concluded its Thirteenth Meeting.

Braving an improbable episode of snowy weather, senior representatives from the seven ITER Members had gathered in the fifth-floor Council Chamber for two days (20-21 November) to discuss project progress under the chairmanship of Hideyuki Takatsu from Japan.

With the sixth full year of operation for the ITER Organization drawing to a close, it was reported that all major contracts for on-site civil works have been awarded. The manufacturing of key components is also progressing steadily within the ITER Member industries; in 2014 the first completed components will be shipped to the ITER site by the Members.

Council elects two new
Deputy Director-Generals (DDGs)

In the ITER Organization, DDGs play an important role in facilitating the communication and enhancing the interaction with the ITER Members and their Domestic Agencies. One DDG is appointed from every ITER Member.

Last week, the ITER Council elected two new DDGs. Mary Erlenborn, for the US, will be joining the ITER Organization on 1 February 2014 as Director of the General Administration Directorate. Joo-Shik Bak, for Korea, is Chief Engineer and Director of the Project Control & Assembly Directorate. With these new appointments, all DDG positions are filled, with the exception of India.

"The DDGs are an essential communication link between the ITER Organization and the Domestic Agencies," stressed the Director-General of the ITER Organization, Osamu Motojima after the meeting. "We now have all DDGs except from India and I hope to have an Indian candidate for DDG as soon as possible."
The Council responded to an internal, biennial independent assessment that urged changes in both project management and governance. The Council agreed with the assessment's findings, which indicated that the project faces challenges including schedule delays that need to be addressed immediately. To this effect, an action plan will be presented in mid-January and will be evaluated at an Extraordinary Meeting of the ITER Council in early February 2014.

Council also made two important technical decisions, approving ITER Organization proposals to commence operations with a full tungsten divertor and to include the in-vessel coils, which will improve plasma stability, in the ITER Baseline.

Taking advantage of the presence of delegates from all of the ITER Members, three Procurement Arrangements were signed during or just after the Council meeting: the third Complementary Diagnostics Procurement Arrangement for the Integration Engineering of Upper Port #9 with India; the Blanket Shield (50%) Procurement Arrangement with China; and the Blanket Shield (50%) Procurement Arrangement with Korea (see the article on the blanket shield in this issue).

The next regular meeting of the ITER Council is scheduled for 18-19 June 2014 in Saint Petersburg, Russia.

Click here to view the photo gallery of the Thirteenth ITER Council.
 
Read the full Press Release in
English and in French.




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