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Latest ITER Newsline

  • IAEA and ITER | Even closer cooperation

    Under Practical Arrangements signed in June, the International Atomic Energy Agency and the ITER Organization will be expanding and deepening a long history of [...]

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  • Neutral Beam Test Facility | High voltage component for MITICA

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  • 24th ITER Council | En route to First Plasma, 63% of the work is done

    The ITER Council has met for the twenty-fourth time since the signature of the ITER Agreement. Representatives from China, the European Union, India, Japan, Kor [...]

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  • Upper ports | A very international effort

    The 18 upper ports of the ITER vacuum vessel are procured by Russia, manufactured in Germany, and mounted (in part) on the vessel sectors by contractors in Ital [...]

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  • Paint job | One level done, five to go

    The job is done and the effect is spectacular. At the deepest basement level (B2) of the Tokamak Building, the floors, walls, and ceilings are now perfectly whi [...]

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Of Interest

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A perfect day for pouring

R.A.

It takes a fisheye lens, which makes the steel reinforcement appear a bit distorted, to take in the whole of the concrete pouring scene for the Tritium Building slab ... (Click to view larger version...)
It takes a fisheye lens, which makes the steel reinforcement appear a bit distorted, to take in the whole of the concrete pouring scene for the Tritium Building slab ...
In the scope of a regular building project, concrete pouring is a commonplace operation. For an ITER building, however, it is the culmination of months of calculations, modellization and painstaking preparation.

"It's a moment of great pleasure and relief," admits Laurent Patisson, Nuclear Buildings Section leader at ITER. "For a short time, the paperwork is over and we're into the real thing."

What added to his sense of satisfaction last Thursday 19 June, as a second segment of the Tritium Building slab was poured on the north side of the Tokamak Pit, was the weather. For both the workers and the concrete, the conditions were just perfect.

Unlike during pouring events scheduled mid-winter or high-summer, the concrete coming out of the on-site batching plant didn't require warming or cooling. Like a good wine, it was served at room temperature.

Operations began at 6:45 a.m. and followed a strict procedure detailed in a five-page program. Two giant 47-metre pumps, capable of delivering 50 cubic metres of concrete per hour, were guided from north to south, progressively filling the steel reinforcement structure with 1,155 cubic metres of specially formulated concrete.

Four layers were poured successively, each followed by vibrating operations, for a total height of 1.5 metres. By midnight, the 770 square metres of plot #12 were filled. The next morning, the surface of the new concrete was flooded to prevent dehydration and the possible creation of micro-cracks on the concrete "skin." The plot's surface will remain underwater for at least 10 days—a phase known as concrete curing.

The remaining, central segment of the Tritium Building slab should be poured in the coming week. Then, sometime in the summer, it will be time to celebrate an even bigger moment of "pleasure and relief": the pouring of the first segment of the Tokamak Building slab, following the green light to proceed from the French Nuclear Safety Authority.


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