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News & Media

Latest ITER Newsline

  • Heating | A pinch of moondust in the ITER plasma

    One day in the distant future, fusion plants might be fuelled by helium 3—an isotope that is extremely scarce on Earth but reputed to be abundant on the Moon. B [...]

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  • Delivery | 2,000 km through canals, locks and tunnels

    When the thruway is closed, one takes the back roads. And when it's low-water season on the Rhine-Rhône canal, a barge leaving Switzerland for the Mediterranean [...]

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  • Monaco Fellows | A hand in shaping ITER

    For the sixth time, ITER is welcoming a group of five young researchers as part of the Monaco-ITER postdoctoral fellowship scheme. Working alongside experienced [...]

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  • On site | Drone survey on a perfect day

    There are days in winter when the skies over Provence are perfectly transparent. Snowy peaks 200 kilometres away appear close enough to be touched and farms, co [...]

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  • AAAS conference | ITER on the world science stage

    With more than 120,000 members globally, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is billed as the world's largest scientific society. The [...]

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Of Interest

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Businesses, jobs, technology

ITER's impact on European economy and society

Kirsten Haupt

What are the economic, societal and scientific benefits for Europe stemming from its participation in ITER? And—looking ahead—what future impact can Europe expect from its role in this unique scientific project that aims to unlock the potential of fusion energy? These were the top questions discussed by 120 participants at the ITER Industry Day in Brussels, Belgium, on 4 December.

Business leaders, policy-makers, scientists and civil society representatives assessed ITER as a source of current and future benefits for Europe's economy, society and research communities at the first European Commission ITER Industry Day. (Click to view larger version...)
Business leaders, policy-makers, scientists and civil society representatives assessed ITER as a source of current and future benefits for Europe's economy, society and research communities at the first European Commission ITER Industry Day.
It was the first time that the European Commission had sent an invitation for an ITER Industry Day. And they all came: European business representatives, policy makers, scientists, civil society organizations, and the media.

The ITER Project already brings a host of concrete opportunities for industry, businesses and the research community. Over 400 European companies and 60 scientific and research entities—from more than 20 countries—have concluded contracts with the European Domestic Agency for a total of approximately EUR 4 billion.

Director-General Bernard Bigot—here between Frédérique Vidal, French Minister of Higher Education, Research and Innovation (left) and Johannes Schwemmer, Director of the European Domestic Agency for ITER—briefed the ITER Industry Day gathering on recent project progress. (Click to view larger version...)
Director-General Bernard Bigot—here between Frédérique Vidal, French Minister of Higher Education, Research and Innovation (left) and Johannes Schwemmer, Director of the European Domestic Agency for ITER—briefed the ITER Industry Day gathering on recent project progress.
The Italian company Belleli Energy is but one example of how ITER can help European businesses to grow and thrive through development opportunities and job creation: "Thanks to ITER, the staff of our company grew from 300 in 2010 to 1,000 today," reports CEO Paolo Fedeli. 

Spin-off technologies is another area with great potential. Participants discussed how spin-offs, spill-overs, start-ups and applications resulting from ITER-related contracts can promote development in other technological and industrial areas.

Jérôme Pamela, the chairman of EUROfusion, Europe's fusion energy think tank, pointed to ITER's impact on scientific research potential: "Facts speak for themselves. ITER, which provides us a common goal, is a key driver for 2,000 research positions that exist in the member states. Without ITER, there would be far fewer researchers involved."

It was not just about opportunities for Europe in Europe. As an international scientific project with 35 member states from three continents, ITER provides fertile ground worldwide for global technology cooperation, business opportunities, partnerships and innovation.

Click on these links to read speeches by the French Minister for Research, Education and Innovation, Frédérique Vidal, in French and English, and by the EU Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy, Miguel Arias Cañete, in English.


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