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  • Question of the week | Will fusion run out of fuel?

    One of the paradoxes of fusion, the virtually inexhaustible energy of the future, is that it relies on an element that does not exist—or just barely. Tritium, o [...]

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  • Managing data | Setting up a robust process

    Are the ITER systems and processes robust enough to manage the technical and project data for a program of ITER's complexity? Will quality information be made a [...]

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  • Image of the week | Bullseye

    Two perfectly circular structures, looking a lot like archery targets, have been installed on the west-facing wall of the Tokamak Complex. They are not for sh [...]

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  • Art and science | Seeking new perspectives on fusion

    Standing in the middle of the Tokamak Building, sound artist Julian Weaver positions his 3D microphone near one of the openings of the bioshield to record the s [...]

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  • Worksite photos | The view one never tires of

    For the past three-and a half years, ITER Communication has been documenting construction progress from the top of the tallest crane on the ITER worksite. Altho [...]

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Of Interest

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First component installed in Tokamak Complex

Like a lunar module checking its landing coordinates one last time, the cylindrical tank with six metal feet hovered silently over the Tritium Building. The event was significant. Part of ITER's water detritiation plant system, the tank had the honour of being the first component to be installed in the Tokamak Complex.

A contribution from Europe, the 5.4-tonne, 20-cubic-metre holding tank is part of a set of four that will be installed in the coming days, along with two larger tanks. (Click to view larger version...)
A contribution from Europe, the 5.4-tonne, 20-cubic-metre holding tank is part of a set of four that will be installed in the coming days, along with two larger tanks.
Both a "captive component" (once installed, it cannot be removed) and a Protection Important Component (PIC), the holding tank that was lowered into the Tritium Building on the morning of Tuesday 29 March is part of a set of four that will play a key part in the detritiation process of the ITER installation.

In the Tokamak Building, tritium needs to be removed from the atmosphere of different "spaces" such as the vacuum vessel, the port cells, the neutral beam injector, etc.

Both a ''captive component'' and a Protection Important Component (PIC), the holding tank will play a key part in the detritiation process of the Tokamak Complex. (Click to view larger version...)
Both a ''captive component'' and a Protection Important Component (PIC), the holding tank will play a key part in the detritiation process of the Tokamak Complex.
Tritiated air is extracted and passed through a shower (the "scrubber columns") to become tritiated water, which is stored in holding tanks. Following storage, the tritiated water is submitted to electrolysis to recuperate the highly valuable tritium in the ITER fuel cycle.

Three years ago the design of the tanks was launched and progressed in parallel with the design of the finer details of the Tritium Building—such as defining the precise position of the anchors for the tanks.

As interfaces perfectly locked into place, Tuesday's operation marked an important and symbolic moment in the progress of construction.


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