Subscribe options

Select your newsletters:

Please enter your email address:

@

News & Media

Latest ITER Newsline

  • Cryostat | As clean as a freshly minted coin

    Before it is encased in its protective cocoon and moved to temporary storage, the cryostat upper cylinder must be cleaned. The operation is both low-tech and es [...]

    Read more

  • Top management | Alain Bécoulet, Head of Engineering

    When Alain Bécoulet embraced plasma physics back in the mid-1980s as a student at France's prestigious École Normale Supérieure, he did it for two reasons: one [...]

    Read more

  • Science | New steady state analysis

    Recent research shows it should be possible to reach steady-state fusion production in ITER with the baseline mix of heating and current drive systems, in parti [...]

    Read more

  • Image of the week | Like dancers in a vertical ballet

    Of all the movements of workers and equipment in the Assembly Hall, these are the most gracious... Like ballet dancers on a vertical stage, two workers are b [...]

    Read more

  • Cryostat base | Grand opening soon

    Picture a giant soup plate, 30 metres in diameter, slowing descending into a deep concrete cylinder. Track the near imperceptible movement of the double overhea [...]

    Read more

Of Interest

See archived entries

An "enigmatic" monument to ITER

Jean-Paul Philippe is a renowned French artist who specializes in abstract, monumental sculptures. One of his most famous works is in Asciano, a village near Sienna, Italy. It features large stone structures reminiscent of the Puerta del Sol of ancient Tiwanaku in Bolivia.

A small-scale model of Jean-Paul Philippe's sculpture is on exhibit at the Musée Granet in Aix-en-Provence. (Click to view larger version...)
A small-scale model of Jean-Paul Philippe's sculpture is on exhibit at the Musée Granet in Aix-en-Provence.
Asciano happens to be the "sister city" of La Roque d'Anthéron, a village located some 30 minutes east of the ITER worksite and one that is skirted by the ITER Itinerary.

A few years ago, the mayor of La Roque d'Anthéron and Philippe met and decided that the "sister city" deserved a "sister monument."

"My work in Asciano had to do with the Sun," explains the artist. "It was quite a coincidence that the convoys that deliver components to the artificial Sun of ITER pass right by Asciano's sister city."

In the spring of 2016, Philippe visited the ITER site and was convinced.

The artist, sitting here next to the Asciano sculpture, sees his work as an ''enigmatic signal'' for ITER. What is missing for the moment is the funding ... (Click to view larger version...)
The artist, sitting here next to the Asciano sculpture, sees his work as an ''enigmatic signal'' for ITER. What is missing for the moment is the funding ...
The monument he designed for ITER features a high column made of seven granite blocks—the seven ITER Members—rising from a stone platform. A small-scale model of the sculpture is currently on exhibit at the Musée Granet in Aix-en-Provence.

On the top of the column, a notch is hollowed out and covered with gold foil to "gather the light of the setting Sun." The light at the end of day will also reveal Einstein's "ΔE=Δmc2" mass-to-energy conversion formula that is at the core of the fusion reaction. Halfway down another hollow in the form of a crescent Moon is meant to catch the morning light.

The sculpture aims to be "enigmatic," says the artist—a "signal" on the way to ITER that the transport convoys will pass on their way to the construction site.

What is missing for the moment is the funding. The artist and the municipality of La Roque d'Anthéron plan to establish a committee to gather contributions from institutions and private companies.


return to the latest published articles