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Latest ITER Newsline

  • Art and ITER | Two sisters, two suns and a monument to fusion

    Amid the gentle slopes of Asciano, Italy, there stands a stone window that frames the Sun on the summer solstice. It looks as though it might have always been t [...]

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  • Staff | The men and women of ITER

    They hail from Ahmedabad and Prague ... from Naka and Moscow ... from Seoul, Hefei, Atlanta and hundreds of other towns and cities across the 35 nations partici [...]

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  • ITER Talks | All about ITER and fusion

    Beginning this autumn, the ITER Organization will be launching a new video series to inform, inspire and educate. The first video—introducing the series and off [...]

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  • Image of the week | A majestic components enters the stage

    The floor of the Assembly Hall is an ever-changing stage. Like characters in a grand production, components of all size and shapes make a spectacular entry, pl [...]

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  • Magnet system | A set of spares for the long journey

    In about five years, ITER will embark on a long journey through largely uncharted territory. Conditions will be harsh and—despite all the calculations, modellin [...]

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Of Interest

See archived entries

ITER Robots

The experts of tomorrow

Robotics is at the heart of every major industrial project. In ITER, the operation of mobile automated systems will play a key role in assembling machine components in the restricted environment of the assembly pit, in maintaining the installation once operations have started, and in dismantling it at the end of its life cycle. The same will be true, but on a massive scale, for the fusion industry of the future. As a consequence, scores of experts will be needed to design, manufacture and operate the robotic systems that will make fusion possible.

Initiated in 2012, ITER Robots brings together junior and high school students in a friendly competition that mimics some of the challenges of handling actual ITER components. (Click to view larger version...)
Initiated in 2012, ITER Robots brings together junior and high school students in a friendly competition that mimics some of the challenges of handling actual ITER components.
Chances are that a few of these future experts were present on 15 June for the grand finale of the ITER Robots competition, whose 10th edition was held this year at Collège Louis-Philibert in Le Puy-Sainte-Réparade, a village located some 30 kilometres west of the ITER site.

Organised by Agence Iter France (CEA) in partnership with the local representatives of the French Ministry of National Education, ITER Robots brings together junior and high school students (18 teams for a total of 300 students this year) in a friendly competition that mimics some of the challenges of handling actual ITER components.

Under their professor's guidance, students spend months designing and programming Lego-based robots and "training" them to perform specific tasks in and around a mockup of the ITER Tokamak. Their performance is assessed by a jury of actual robotics experts from ITER and CEA's Institute for Magnetic Fusion Research (IRFM).

Students spend months designing and programming Lego-based robots and ''training'' them to perform specific tasks in and around a mockup of the ITER Tokamak. (Click to view larger version...)
Students spend months designing and programming Lego-based robots and ''training'' them to perform specific tasks in and around a mockup of the ITER Tokamak.
"Watching you perform today didn't feel much different than observing the ITER teams presently involved in the machine assembly phase. It was the same concentration, the same coordination, the same attention to the smallest detail," said Alain Bécoulet, Head of the ITER Engineering Domain (representing ITER Director-General Bernard Bigot), in his address to the participants.

At a reduced scale, participation in ITER Robots is about measuring the challenges of handling ITER components remotely. At real-scale, it is a demonstration of the importance of teamwork and shared responsibility.



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