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News & Media

Latest ITER Newsline

  • The physics behind the transition to H-mode

    H‐mode—or thesudden improvement of plasma confinement in the magnetic field of tokamaksby approximatelya factor of two—is thehigh confinement regime that all mo [...]

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  • In search of the green plasma

    Sébastien König's core competence is in planning and scheduling; his passion is in understanding the workings of the Universe. In his previous life, before join [...]

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  • An outing into the future

    Open Doors days occur with scientific regularity at ITER (spring and autumn) and yet—due to the rapid evolution of work on site—each event offers something new. [...]

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  • Fusion "grandfather" tells family story

    Grandfathers like to tell stories. And Robert Aymar, the 'grandfather' of the French fusion community, is no exception. 'Being so old,' he quipped at last week' [...]

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  • An AC/DC adapter ... ITER size

    Like flashlight and smartphones, the ITER magnets—all 10,000 tonnes of them—will run on direct current (DC). And like flashlight and smartphones they will need [...]

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Of Interest

See archived articles

Merry plasmas!

On 14 December, at 6:03 p.m., a flash of light illuminated the vacuum vessel of WEST, the rejuvenated Tore Supra tokamak designed to serve as a test bench for ITER.

Operational since 1988, the CEA-Euratom tokamak Tore Supra underwent a major transformation and became WEST (W Environment in Steady-state Tokamak), a test bench for ITER. The machine produced its first plasma on 14 December. (Click to view larger version...)
Operational since 1988, the CEA-Euratom tokamak Tore Supra underwent a major transformation and became WEST (W Environment in Steady-state Tokamak), a test bench for ITER. The machine produced its first plasma on 14 December.
This first plasma rewarded four years of hard work that involved stripping out the 30-year-old machine, adding magnetic coils to confine the originally circular plasma into a "D shape," and trading its carbon-carbon fibre (CFC) "limiter" for an ITER-like tungsten divertor.

Operators at the French Institute for Magnetic Fusion Research (IRFM) are now confident that they can move forward to the first experimental campaign, set to be launched in March 2017. The first phase of the campaign will explore heat load patterns and H mode transition; the second in October-December 2017 will focus on testing plasma-facing components under the high heat loads of ITER-grade plasmas.

On that very same day, Korea's National Fusion Research Institute (NFRI) announced that the KSTAR tokamak had achieved a record 70-second H-mode plasma. (Click to view larger version...)
On that very same day, Korea's National Fusion Research Institute (NFRI) announced that the KSTAR tokamak had achieved a record 70-second H-mode plasma.
On the very same day that the IRFM team was (discreetly) celebrating WEST's first plasma, another team, at the other end of the world, also had an achievement to announce: a record 70-second H-mode plasma had just been recorded by the Korean superconducting tokamak KSTAR.

One month earlier, in mid-November, the Chinese tokamak EAST had achieved a similar but slightly shorter 60-second steady-state high energy plasma.


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