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News & Media

Latest ITER Newsline

  • Without minimizing challenges, Council reaffirms commitment

    On 24 October 2007, the ITER Organization was officially established following the ratification by the seven ITER Members of the project's constitutive document [...]

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  • Heat waves

    Plasma is like a tenuous mist of particles—light atoms that have been dissociated into ions (the atom nucleus) and free-roaming electrons. In order to study pla [...]

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  • What a difference ten days make

    There was a time when progress in Tokamak Complex construction was easy to follow.Excavation in 2010; the creation of the ground support structure and seismic f [...]

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  • What's in the box?

    At ITER, even the opening of a box takes on a spectacular dimension. The operation requires a powerful crane, a full team of specialists and, as everything ITER [...]

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  • EU Commission has "positive appreciation" of ITER progress

    On 14 June, the European Commission issued a Communication presenting the revised schedule and budget estimates for European participation in ITER. Its object? [...]

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Of Interest

See archived articles

Planning and scheduling an enormous task

-Ken Blackler, head of the Assembly & Operations Division

Experts from nuclear plant construction, fusion machine assembly, cryogenic plant, large-scale project management, building construction and system engineering gathered from 9-13 December to review the ITER Organization approach to planning and scheduling the assembly and installation activities of the first-of-a-kind ITER Tokamak. (Click to view larger version...)
Experts from nuclear plant construction, fusion machine assembly, cryogenic plant, large-scale project management, building construction and system engineering gathered from 9-13 December to review the ITER Organization approach to planning and scheduling the assembly and installation activities of the first-of-a-kind ITER Tokamak.
How does one review the preparations for the assembly and installation of several million pieces on a first-of-a-kind machine such as ITER? The first step is to bring together 14 experts from a variety of backgrounds—nuclear plant construction, fusion machine assembly, cryogenic plant, large-scale project management, building construction, system engineering and more.

This is what happened at the Château de Cadarache near ITER last week from 9 to 13 December.

The ITER Organization presented to a review panel its approach to planning and scheduling this enormous task, considering the design of the systems to be installed, the physical and practical constraints, the processes to be followed and the identified risks. Installation engineers from the Assembly & Operations Division are combining their knowledge with colleagues from the technical departments responsible for designing each system and are currently working with construction planners in order to estimate the time needed for each step of the assembly.

The Indian Domestic Agency also presented its plan for the work it will do on site to build the critical cryogenic piping and storage systems.

Adding in the crew of workers needed for each assembly or installation task, the result is a "resource loaded schedule" which is stored in Primavera (P6) software to calculate the overall time and resources needed. The totality of this information is the ITER Organization Integrated Assembly & Installation Plan—or, "How To Build a Tokamak."

The review panel digested a huge amount of information in a very short time, asking searching and challenging questions. (Click to view larger version...)
The review panel digested a huge amount of information in a very short time, asking searching and challenging questions.
The realism of this plan is critical to forecasting when the ITER machine will be turned over to operation and the beginning of its experimental phase.

The review panel digested a huge amount of information in a very short time during some very intensive sessions. They asked searching and challenging questions, analyzed the information given to them and by the end of the week had already given a positive initial report to ITER senior management and the Assembly & Operations Division.

A final report will be issued in January, at which time the ITER Organization will draw upon the panel's valuable comments and recommendations as it moves forward to complete the final plan in time for work to start in 2015.


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