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

  • Central solenoid assembly | First sequences underway

    What does it take to assemble the magnet at the heart of ITER? Heavy lifting, unerring accuracy, and a human touch. The central solenoid will be assembled from [...]

    Read more

  • Assembly | The eyes of ITER

    Supervisors ensure compliance and completion as machine and plant assembly forges ahead. In Greek mythology, Argus was considered an ideal guardian because his [...]

    Read more

  • Component repairs | Removing, displacing and disassembling

    A good repair job starts with a cleared workbench, the right tools on hand and a strong vise. This axiom, true for odd jobs in a home workshop, is also true for [...]

    Read more

  • Assembly | Set of handling tools for in-vessel installation finalized

    Inside of a test facility that reproduces the volume and geometry of the ITER vacuum vessel environment, a team from CNIM Systèmes Industriels has dem [...]

    Read more

  • 360° image of the week | The assembly theatre

    Ever since it was invented almost two centuries ago, photography has tried to capture what the human eye actually sees. Despite huge progress achieved, it has n [...]

    Read more

Of Interest

See archived entries

Diagnostics

Final Procurement Arrangement signed

ITER Diagnostics reached an important milestone in December 2021 when it concluded the last Procurement Arrangement of the diagnostics program.

The technical specifications for ITER's full complement of in-kind diagnostic systems are contained in 54 PAs/CDPs representing 66 projects. The final signature in December 2021 means that the focus can now be on building and integrating the systems. (Click to view larger version...)
The technical specifications for ITER's full complement of in-kind diagnostic systems are contained in 54 PAs/CDPs representing 66 projects. The final signature in December 2021 means that the focus can now be on building and integrating the systems.
After signing a Procurement Arrangement with the Japanese Domestic Agency on 13 December 2021 for the design and manufacture of a lower port, the team could breathe a sigh of relief. With the last contract settled, all that remained was to carry out the work.

"We manage the supply of components manufactured all over the world through these Procurement Arrangements (PAs)—and, for some diagnostics, through what we call complementary diagnostics PAs (CDPs)," explains Antonio Torralba Pinedo, in-kind management officer in the Project Control Office. "They bind the Domestic Agency to providing its in-kind contribution, as defined at the start of the project in the ITER Agreement. The Domestic Agency then involves industry by signing one or more contracts for procurement of the system."

Each in-kind contribution constitutes a certain scope and value associated with a given system or component. This value is expressed in terms of an internal project currency, called the ITER Unit of Account (IUA).

Procurement Arrangements are particularly challenging for diagnostics

While diagnostic systems represent less than 5% of the total cost of the ITER Project, they account for more than 30% of the Procurement Arrangements.

"Diagnostics are tremendously complicated because of the sheer number of systems," explains Torralba. "Over 100 diagnostics will be installed in the ITER machine, most of them in multiple locations." There may be a single diagnostic in three parts of the Tokamak—or in some cases, diagnostics with cables extending to thousands of locations inside the vacuum vessel.

Even when the technologies are well understood, every one of the ITER systems is first-of-a-kind. While many of the diagnostics have already been used in smaller tokamaks, ITER requires systems that are either fully automated or remote controlled—and that can survive in a nuclear environment with huge heat and radiation loads. All systems have to be thoroughly qualified at all phases of their development, starting with the design and extending to commissioning.

The assembly and testing of the different systems is also a challenge. After factory acceptance tests, most components are installed inside a port plug and tested again. Ultimately, the integrated port plugs are delivered to the ITER site, where they are finalized and commissioned along with other in-vessel diagnostics.

A page is turned

The technical specifications for ITER's full complement of in-kind diagnostic systems are contained in 54 PAs/CDPs representing 66 projects. Concluding the Arrangements, which involved all seven Domestic Agencies, was a big achievement. Before each signature, the conceptual designs of the systems had to be completed—no small feat, given the leading-edge technology involved.

"What's more, each Domestic Agency has its own unique set of internal processes," explains Torralba. "There was quite a bit of negotiation to arrive at a common understanding for every signature—a reflection of the unique cultures and practices of the ITER Members."

The first diagnostic Procurement Arrangement was signed in June 2011, the first of six that year. In subsequent years, up to 13 Procurement Arrangements were signed per year—a far higher rate than any other group of the ITER Project.

"Unlike other groups, which have a small number of high-value Procurement Arrangements, diagnostics is characterized by many smaller value items," explains Torralba. "Managing the specifications for all these technologies, often in parallel, and making sure the different elements come together on time was very complicated, and required flexibility and coordination."

With the last diagnostic Procurement Arrangement now signed and the Domestic Agencies committed, Torralba is looking forward to the future. "We can now focus all our effort on getting the systems built and integrated."



return to the latest published articles