Subscribe options

Select your newsletters:

Please enter your email address:

@

News & Media

Latest ITER Newsline

  • CODAC | The "invisible system" that makes all things possible

    It is easy to spot all the big equipment going into ITER; what is not so visible is the underlying software that makes the equipment come alive. Local control [...]

    Read more

  • Assembly | Zero-gravity in a cramped place

    The volume of the Tokamak pit may be huge, but so are the components that need to be installed. As a result, assembly operators will have very little room to ma [...]

    Read more

  • Image of the week | A closer look at KSTAR

    Over its twelve years of operation, the KSTAR tokamak (for Korea Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Research) has built an extremely valuable database for the fut [...]

    Read more

  • Pre-compression rings | Six of nine completed

    The European Domestic Agency is responsible for the fabrication of nine pre-compression rings (three top, three bottom and three spare). The first five have bee [...]

    Read more

  • Industrial milestone | Japan completes the first D-shaped coil of the ITER Tokamak

    In a ceremony on 30 January, a major industrial achievement was celebrated in Japan—the completion of the first 360-tonne D-shaped toroidal field coil for the I [...]

    Read more

Of Interest

See archived entries

Assembly tools

Titan moves its little finger

A few days ago, one of the Titans in the Assembly Hall woke up and flexed its little finger. The movement was slow, almost imperceptible. Like in a living body, nerves and muscles (in the form of signal cables and hydraulic pumps) coordinated their action to lift and lower one of the upper alignment units at the top of the giant sector sub-assembly tool—one of the first steps in the mechanical tests program being performed on the spectacular, 20-metre high twin Titans.

No fewer than 20 hydraulic cylindrical rods actuated by hydraulic/pneumatic forces enable the giant tool to adjust the different elements of the pre-assembly with millimetric accuracy. The hydraulic fluid circulates between dozens of pumps throughout a 500-metre-long network of pipes. (Click to view larger version...)
No fewer than 20 hydraulic cylindrical rods actuated by hydraulic/pneumatic forces enable the giant tool to adjust the different elements of the pre-assembly with millimetric accuracy. The hydraulic fluid circulates between dozens of pumps throughout a 500-metre-long network of pipes.
The sector sub-assembly tools (SSAT) are the largest tools in the ITER assembly panoply. Their task is to pre-assemble a vacuum vessel sector with its thermal shield and two toroidal field coils. Opening and closing their arms, adjusting the position of their upper and lower alignment units, they will repeat sub-assembly operations nine times, once for each of the Tokamak's nine vacuum vessel sectors.

The pre-assemblies, weighing approximately 1,200 tonnes, will then be transferred to the assembly pit by way of a double overhead gantry crane to be integrated into the machine.

Before this can happen, however, two major milestones need to be accomplished: the completion of full mechanical and load tests on both SSATs, and the erection of a steel structure over of the Tokamak Building to "close over" the Tokamak Pit and allow the Assembly Hall crane bays to be extended.

Load tests are scheduled to begin in early June, and preparation work has already started for the extension of the crane bays.

Click here to view a video of the Titan's awakening.


return to the latest published articles