Since the last concrete pour
of the Tokamak Complex basemat slab two months ago, the ITER worksite has been undergoing a transformation as the consortium responsible for foundation works (GTM
) has been winding down its activities and the consortium charged with the construction of the Tokamak Complex and eight auxiliary buildings (VFR
) has taken possession of the different work areas.
In this picture taken on 30 October, the tallest crane
on site (left, 82 m) is being used to carefully position the boom of the 52-metre crane at the very centre of the basemat. Work is also underway on a third crane (far right, in red); the concrete base is in place (5 x 5 m) and the metal structure is rising section by section.
Forming a perfect circle around the central crane are the starter bars for the 3.25-metre-thick bioshield wall that will surround the machine. A wider circle, with starter bars spaced at regular intervals, marks out the columns that will support the second slab level (B1) of the Tokamak Complex.
Noticeable change is also taking place on the site of the Assembly Building, to the south of the Seismic Pit. In this picture Yves Belpomo, construction coordinator for ITER Building Site & Infrastructure, and Vincenzo Sarica, head controller for concrete and steel structures at Engage (architect/engineer for the European Domestic Agency), are seen inspecting one of the 12-metre column sections that will be assembled as part of the steel "skeleton" of the Assembly Building.
Eleven 60-metre pillars will be spaced every 9.3 metres along each side of the basemat to support the steel frame and the roof of the building. A parallel row of columns—not quite as thick and set inwards by a few metres—will support the rails for the double 750-tonne gantry crane and the two 50-tonne auxiliary cranes.
Bolting the bracings that tie the two parallel rows of columns together is not a simple operation: first, the bolts are tightened to 75 percent of the nominal torque; the final torque is applied only after strict control of the assembly's geometry.
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