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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 [...]

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  • 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 [...]

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  • 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 [...]

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  • 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 [...]

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  • 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 [...]

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Of Interest

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Image of the week

More than meets the eye

Eight months separate these two satellite-like images of the ITER site.

 (Click to view larger version...)
In July 2019, nine years into construction, concrete pouring had reached the seventh and  final level (L5) in the Tokamak Building but the edifice was still roofless—the first pillar of the steel structure would only be installed in September. Eight months later, the roof is completed, and so is the first layer of cladding on the three sides of the building.

 (Click to view larger version...)
To the left, in the July 2019 image, the cooling cells in the heat rejection zone are still under construction and piping and pumps are not yet installed.

Adjacent to the heat rejection zone, the batching plant is still active, producing the last of the 250,000 cubic metres of concrete that were needed for building construction. Now that 75 percent of civil works to First Plasma is complete, the volume of concrete needed is only a fraction of what it used to be. The batching plant has been dismantled and the production of a local facility in nearby Vinon-sur-Verdon will be sufficient to cover present and future needs.

In terms of worksite progress there is, however, more than just meets the eye: in July 2019, when ITER and its Indian partners celebrated the finalization of both the cryostat base and lower cylinder, the upper cylinder was in the early stages of assembly and welding. Last month, workers were busy cleaning the finalized upper cylinder prior to wrapping it into its protective cocoon.

Assembly preparations are accelerating. In July 2019, the different parts of the upending tool, manufactured in Korea, had not yet taken to the sea. Now, the fully assembled tool is being maneuvered and tested. And in every building, unseen by the peering eye of the drone hovering above the platform, equipment installation is progressing quickly, bringing ITER closer to its first major appointment with history—the production of First Plasma in less than six years.


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