Enable Recite

Subscribe options

Select your newsletters:

Please enter your email address:

@

Your email address will only be used for the purpose of sending you the ITER Organization publication(s) that you have requested. ITER Organization will not transfer your email address or other personal data to any other party or use it for commercial purposes.

If you change your mind, you can easily unsubscribe by clicking the unsubscribe option at the bottom of an email you've received from ITER Organization.

For more information, see our Privacy policy.

News & Media

Latest ITER Newsline

  • Data | Archiving 20 gigabytes per second—and making it usable

    One of the main deliverables of ITER is the data itself—and there will be a tremendous amount of it to store and analyze. During First Plasma, the highest produ [...]

    Read more

  • Electrical tests | High voltage, high risk

    In the southern part of the construction platform, a one-hectare yard hosts some of the strangest-looking components of the entire ITER installation. Rows of to [...]

    Read more

  • Vacuum vessel | First sector safely docked

    It was 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday 6 April and something quite unusual happened in the ITER Assembly Hall: applause spontaneously erupted from the teams that h [...]

    Read more

  • Remote ITER Business Meeting | Virtual interaction, tangible opportunities

    While the advent of Covid-19 has not stopped the relentless advancement of the ITER Project, it has certainly prompted ingenuity in how ITER conducts its work. [...]

    Read more

  • Manufacturing | Europe completes pre-compression rings

    The French company CNIM (Toulon) has produced a tenth pre-compression ring for the ITER Project on behalf of Fusion for Energy, the European Domestic Agency. Th [...]

    Read more

Of Interest

See archived entries

Steady at the helm

Bernard Bigot accepts a second term

In a unanimous decision, the ITER Council has voted to reappoint Dr Bernard Bigot to a second five-year term as Director-General of the ITER Organization. The Council decision centred on two factors: the strong performance of the project in recent years under Dr Bigot's leadership, and the complex challenges that lie ahead as construction ends, massive tokamak components arrive on site, and the stringent, carefully sequenced assembly and installation schedule kicks off in 2020.

Director-General Bigot's re-appointment ensures continuity as the project enters a demanding and high-stakes phase: machine assembly. (Click to view larger version...)
Director-General Bigot's re-appointment ensures continuity as the project enters a demanding and high-stakes phase: machine assembly.
Stakeholders internal and external have welcomed the announcement as a signal from both the Council and Bigot himself of the intent to ensure reliability and continuity for the demanding days that lie ahead.

In 2013, two years before Dr Bigot took the helm of the ITER Project, a report from the biennial Management Assessment had issued a warning: change course or risk project failure. By March 2015, the project was clearly at risk. The staggering complexity of the machine itself—compounded by the intricate international Procurement Arrangements under which companies on three continents would fabricate ITER's first-of-a-kind components—was taking its toll.

The rigour with which the new Director-General set about organizational reform showed that he understood both the high stakes involved and the structural changes needed. The central dilemma was daunting: how to ramp up the pace of construction and manufacturing at the same time as the project was undergoing exhaustive internal and external reviews of ITER's design, engineering, schedule, and cost—and all the while driving a revolution in project culture.

Nearly four years of progress on the ITER worksite (February 2015, November 2018). (Click to view larger version...)
Nearly four years of progress on the ITER worksite (February 2015, November 2018).
The results have been significant. Physical progress on every front has been matched by renewed optimism across the project. Once-sceptical stakeholders have been reassured. The project recently reached 60% completion through First Plasma in 2025.

Success, however, is not a one-man feat. Dr Bigot frequently reiterates the importance of teamwork and individual accountability at all levels. In his message last week to ITER staff and the seven ITER Members, announcing his acceptance of a second term, he set a familiar tone: "... the most important person for the success of the ITER Project is not the ITER Organization Director-General, but each of you, each of the stakeholders, each of our contractors and suppliers, each of us."

Read the press release in English or French.


return to the latest published articles