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140 companies ready to take on the "terrific challenge" of ITER assembly

-Sabina Griffith

ITER assembly specialists Bob Shaw and Ken Blackler (left) discuss with potential contractors during a break in the program of the ITER Assembly and Installation Information Day. (Click to view larger version...)
ITER assembly specialists Bob Shaw and Ken Blackler (left) discuss with potential contractors during a break in the program of the ITER Assembly and Installation Information Day.
The ITER Assembly and Installation Information Day held at ITER Headquarters on 21 May marked the entry into a new era for the ITER Project.

As the name suggests, the project is about to set the course for the assembly of the ITER machine. More than one million pieces—some huge and very heavy, some fragile and tiny—will have to be assembled with millimetre accuracy during the assembly of the ITER Tokamak and plant systems. Special tools will have to be developed to lift, turn and attach the components.

"ITER assembly is a terrific challenge—a challenge that we are ready to take, with your help," said ITER Director-General Bernard Bigot in his opening remarks. Over 200 representatives of 140 international companies were gathered in the ITER amphitheatre for the full-day program.

The large amount of interest displayed by the participants in learning more about the project's assembly procurement strategy and the contracts that will be launched was "exciting," Director-General Bigot stated. "We will need to work very closely together. You are more than suppliers, you are partners in one of the most ambitious scientific and engineering projects ever undertaken!"


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