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

  • Cryolines | Out through the door, in through the roof

    Cooling fluids for the machine's magnets, thermal shield and cryopumps will travel to the Tokamak Building through a set of large multi-process pipes (cryolines [...]

    Read more

  • Image of the week | Next in line

    Of six ring-shaped coils required for the ITER Tokamak, poloidal field coil #6 (PF6) is the heaviest (400 tonnes) and the second smallest, with a diameter of 10 [...]

    Read more

  • Assembly tools | Strong base for a very heavy task

    The first part of the in-pit assembly tool has been installed in the Tokamak pit. When complete, the tool will stand more than 20 metres high and branch out in [...]

    Read more

  • Diagnostics | A stowaway on board toroidal field coil #8

    Hidden inside the steel case of the most recent toroidal field coil delivered to ITER—TF8, from Japan—is a unique and critical diagnostic device. Named after th [...]

    Read more

  • Vacuum vessel sector | A 90° tilt in mid-air

    Ever since ITER entered the machine assembly phase, some ten months ago, we have been treated to a few spectacular lifting operations. In May 2020, we watched t [...]

    Read more

Of Interest

See archived entries

Sub-assembly tools

A Titan's big hug

A Titan's hug is a slow affair. For the sector sub-assembly tools, rotating both arms from "full open" to "full close" will require no less than four hours of near-imperceptible motion.

Resting on the ground to the left in this image, are the two 350-tonne mock loads that represent toroidal field coils. Tool load tests will begin in mid-July and last for about a month. (Click to view larger version...)
Resting on the ground to the left in this image, are the two 350-tonne mock loads that represent toroidal field coils. Tool load tests will begin in mid-July and last for about a month.
In the Assembly Hall everything is being readied for the tool load tests, which are scheduled to begin in mid-July and last for about one month.

Two 350-tonne test loads, each representing an ITER toroidal field coil, have been assembled on the floor at the entrance. Made of seven different steel-and-concrete modules, the dummies slightly exceed the weight of the actual coils but closely reproduce their centre of gravity and distribution of mass.

During the tests, the mock toroidal field loads will be mounted on the arms of the giant tools and delicately rotated inward to the point where—if they were the real components—they would be close enough to be assembled to the vacuum vessel sector positioned in the centre of the tool, as well as to thermal shield panels.

During the machine assembly phase, this "slow embrace" will be performed nine times—one for each sector of the doughnut-shaped vacuum vessel.

"The weight of the components and the very high accuracy required create very severe conditions," says Ryutaro Okugawa, the leader of the ITER Tooling & Engineering Group, which is overseeing the load test preparation.

Made of seven different steel-and-concrete modules, the dummies slightly exceed the weight of the actual coil but closely reproduce their centre of gravity and distribution of mass. (Click to view larger version...)
Made of seven different steel-and-concrete modules, the dummies slightly exceed the weight of the actual coil but closely reproduce their centre of gravity and distribution of mass.
First, the stiffness and rigidity of the seven-module loads needs to be confirmed. This will be achieved by lifting the dummies a few centimetres above the shop floor and measuring the stress on the tension bars—the so-called "Macalloys"—that keep the module together.

Then comes the hard part: each load will be lifted and upended using a 800-tonne mobile crane (during the actual assembly activities, a bespoke "upending tool" will be used) working in close coordination with the overhead cranes of the  Assembly Hall.

The mock loads will then be positioned with utmost precision on their dedicated supports within each tool in turn and attached to their respective upper and lower adjustment units.

For the 22-metre-high Titan undergoing testing, it will be time to slowly close its heavily loaded arms and practice—for the first time—the actual embrace of a 440-tonne vacuum vessel sector.


return to the latest published articles