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News & Media

Latest ITER Newsline

  • Cryolines | Another day, another spool

    Having wedged his body and equipment into the cramped space between the ceiling and the massive pipe, a worker is busy welding two cryolines spools. A few metre [...]

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  • Image of the week | Bearings unveiled

    The construction teams are in the last stages of preparing the Tokamak pit for the first major operation of ITER machine assembly: the lowering of the cryostat [...]

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  • Technology | Perfecting tritium breeding for DEMO and beyond

    While ITER will never breed tritium for its own consumption, it will test breeding blanket concepts—the tools and techniques that designers of future DEMO react [...]

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  • Fusion world | Japan and Europe complete the assembly of JT-60SA

    The JT-60SA fusion experiment in Naka, Japan, is designed to explore advanced plasma physics in support of the operation of ITER and next-phase devices. After s [...]

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  • Manufacturing | Thermal shield milestone in Korea

    Six years after the start of fabrication, Korean contractor SFA has completed the last 40° sector of vacuum vessel thermal shield. The stainless steel panels, c [...]

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Of Interest

See archived entries

Image of the week

Don't get mixed up!

In case of a sudden loss of superconductivity in the ITER magnets (a "quench") the helium that circulates in the coils will be almost instantly discharged into dedicated double-wall quench tanks.

This complex set of hand valves and local readings of pressure, temperature and flow is part of the cooling loop that maintains the temperature inside the quench tanks at 100 K. It will provide field operators with a convenient tool for maintenance operations. (Click to view larger version...)
This complex set of hand valves and local readings of pressure, temperature and flow is part of the cooling loop that maintains the temperature inside the quench tanks at 100 K. It will provide field operators with a convenient tool for maintenance operations.
If the tanks were at ambient temperature, the thermal shock caused by cryogenic helium discharged from the magnets at just above 4 K (minus 269 °C) would result in considerable stress and shrinkage to the tank structures.

In order to prevent such a potentially damaging event, the inner vessels of the tanks must be cooled to cryogenic temperature whenever the machine is in operation. This is achieved through a cooling loop that maintains the temperature inside the tanks at 100 K (minus 173 °C)—a temperature at which shrinking has already occurred.

This valve and instrumentation panel outside of the cryoplant is part of that loop. Although measurement signals and activators from all cryogenic systems interface with the CODAC human-machine interface in the local cryo-control room, the outdoor instrumentation panel with its dozens of hand valves and local readings of pressure, temperature and flow provides field operators with a convenient tool for maintenance operations.

 


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