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

  • Manufacturing | Completion of the first vacuum vessel gravity support

    The factory acceptance test on the first ITER vacuum vessel gravity support has been successfully completed at Haneul Engineering in Gunsan, Korea. Under the 8, [...]

    Read more

  • Technology | Hail showers in ASDEX Upgrade for ITER disruption mitigation

    Just before the 2021 Christmas holiday break, the team at the ASDEX Upgrade tokamak successfully fired frozen deuterium pellet fragments into a plasma as part o [...]

    Read more

  • Poloidal field coils | 12 months saved on number two

    Whatever their size or position, the role of the ITER poloidal field coils is to shape and stabilize the plasma inside the vacuum vessel. However, as the plasma [...]

    Read more

  • Divertor dome | Russia delivers a full-scale prototype

    A multiyear qualification program in Russia has concluded with the successful manufacturing and testing of a full-scale divertor dome prototype at the Efremov I [...]

    Read more

  • Image of the week | Adjusting a correction coil's position

    Compared to the massive ITER magnets that weigh up to 400 tonnes, the machine's correction coils are quite lightweight: at 4.5 tonnes, they are the smallest [...]

    Read more

Of Interest

See archived entries

Award

A 30-year friendship with China

Some thirty years ago, HT-7, China's first superconducting tokamak, was entering operation and experiencing some issues with its ion cyclotron resonance (ICRH) antenna. As the fusion world was already one tight-knit family, the European Commission dispatched a young plasma physicist to Hefei, in Anhui province, where the Institute of Plasma Physics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (ASIPP) operated the machine.

Alain Bécoulet, in China in 2006, half-way into a 30-year relationship built on ''warm and confident relationships''. (Click to view larger version...)
Alain Bécoulet, in China in 2006, half-way into a 30-year relationship built on ''warm and confident relationships''.
For Alain Bécoulet, current head of ITER engineering (and former head of France's Institute for Magnetic Fusion Research, IRFM, which operates the WEST project), the mission¹ opened a new chapter in his life, marked by multifaceted collaborations, international agreements and, above all, long-lasting personal friendships.

In the Anhui province, friendships that are particularly meaningful are honoured by a special distinction, the "Huangshan Friendship Award." Last week, it was bestowed on Bécoulet in recognition of his 30-year relationship with ASIPP and the part he played in the development of scientific collaborations between the Chinese and European fusion communities.

For Bécoulet, who received another Chinese distinction earlier this year (the Scientific and Technological Cooperation Award of the People's Republic of China), the Friendship medal holds a special value. "It's not just about the formal collaborations we have established between Chinese institutions and the WEST tokamak, or the Sino-French agreement SIFFER, or the CEA-ASIPP partnership ... it is also, and maybe above all, the warm and confident relationships that we developed during these three decades."

In the early 1990s, when Bécoulet went to Hefei to lend a hand to his ASIPP colleagues, ITER was a four-partner project that China would not join before a full decade. But the seeds of understanding and collaboration were planted, and for the present ITER Engineering Domain Head this is a most precious asset.

 ¹Bécoulet was accompanied by Bertrand Beaumont, a radio frequency heating expert, now head of the ITER Ion Cyclotron section.



return to the latest published articles