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  • Manufacturing | Completion of the first vacuum vessel gravity support

    The factory acceptance test on the first ITER vacuum vessel gravity support has been successfully completed at Haneul Engineering in Gunsan, Korea. Under the 8, [...]

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  • Technology | Hail showers in ASDEX Upgrade for ITER disruption mitigation

    Just before the 2021 Christmas holiday break, the team at the ASDEX Upgrade tokamak successfully fired frozen deuterium pellet fragments into a plasma as part o [...]

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  • Poloidal field coils | 12 months saved on number two

    Whatever their size or position, the role of the ITER poloidal field coils is to shape and stabilize the plasma inside the vacuum vessel. However, as the plasma [...]

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  • Divertor dome | Russia delivers a full-scale prototype

    A multiyear qualification program in Russia has concluded with the successful manufacturing and testing of a full-scale divertor dome prototype at the Efremov I [...]

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  • Image of the week | Adjusting a correction coil's position

    Compared to the massive ITER magnets that weigh up to 400 tonnes, the machine's correction coils are quite lightweight: at 4.5 tonnes, they are the smallest [...]

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Of Interest

See archived entries

State visit

ITER on Macron-Trump agenda

The State visit by French President Emmanuel Macron to Washington dominated the news this week. The main media interest ranged from the Iran nuclear deal and the Paris agreement to presidential handshakes and the symbolism of dinnerware. But under the radar, another important issue was on the Trump-Macron agenda: US support for an ITER Project that is on track for success.

At Blair House, the US President's guest house, French President Emmanuel Macron addresses the delegation that accompanies him on his State visit. ITER Director-General Bernard Bigot is second from left. Fields Medal and Member of the French Parliament Cedric Villani, another strong proponent of ITER, was also part of the delegation. © Présidence de la République (Click to view larger version...)
At Blair House, the US President's guest house, French President Emmanuel Macron addresses the delegation that accompanies him on his State visit. ITER Director-General Bernard Bigot is second from left. Fields Medal and Member of the French Parliament Cedric Villani, another strong proponent of ITER, was also part of the delegation. © Présidence de la République
France is not only the host country of the ITER Project; it also funds about 16 percent of the overall project cost—more than any other single nation. This means France is heavily vested in ITER's well being. Even more importantly, as he emphasized during his address to the US Congress, the French President places high value on scientific discovery and technological innovation. He is a strong vocal advocate for a clean energy future—underscoring the value of ITER.

As a clear signal of ITER's priority, President Macron asked ITER Director-General Bernard Bigot to accompany his presidential delegation to Washington. On Tuesday, in his speech at the French embassy, President Macron singled out ITER as an example of how large cooperative projects and common initiatives in the field of science can be used to build and strengthen bilateral and multilateral relationships among the ITER Members. The ITER Director-General was asked to participate in meetings with President Trump and the US Congress, and built on these discussions in his interactions with Secretary Perry and other US officials.

The time was well spent; the discussions were fruitful. According to the ITER Director-General: "It was clear from President Trump and President Macron's statement that both countries remain committed to maintaining global leadership on nuclear energy, including advanced nuclear technology. In that context, they stated that the US and France will support the ITER program and related scientific cooperation projects."

This outcome, together with the recent positive actions by the US Congress related to ITER funding, is clearly a meaningful step forward.



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