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Latest ITER Newsline

  • Fusion world | Mobilizing for long-pulse operation

    One of the key operational challenges in the development of fusion energy is the achievement, simultaneously, of high fusion performance and long-pulse operatio [...]

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  • ITER science | What is burning plasma?

    The dream of fusion power depends first and foremost on a self-sustaining fusion reaction, with most of the heating power needed coming from within the reaction [...]

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  • Plasma modelling | New SOLPS-ITER code version launched

    The widely used SOLPS-ITER tool for plasma edge modelling has evolved since its launch in 2015. At recent workshop at KU Leuven in Belgium, European specialists [...]

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  • Open Doors Day | Accessing the very heart of ITER

    Small or tall, knowledgeable or neophyte, from near or far ... the 600 people who took part in ITER's latest Open Doors Day all departed with the sense that som [...]

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  • Local | A question and answer session

    Nuclear safety policy in France requires that a local information commission (Commission locale d'information, CLI) be established every time a nuclear installa [...]

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Of Interest

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Open Doors Day

Back together again

After more than two years, ITER has resumed a tradition that dates back to 2007—Open Doors Day. On Saturday 18 June, more than 50 "volunteers," staff and contractors of the ITER Organization, the European agency for ITER, Fusion for Energy, and ITER Construction Manager-as-Agent MOMENTUM, welcomed 800 people to share in the latest progress of ITER construction.

In the Assembly Hall, visitors had the opportunity to see ITER vacuum vessel sectors in different stages of pre-assembly. They agreed that actually standing in front of the components, as opposed to seeing them in pictures, brought home the true scale of the ITER device. (Click to view larger version...)
In the Assembly Hall, visitors had the opportunity to see ITER vacuum vessel sectors in different stages of pre-assembly. They agreed that actually standing in front of the components, as opposed to seeing them in pictures, brought home the true scale of the ITER device.
Schoolchildren, students, ITER staff and their families, members of the public—including from such far away places as Thailand, Venezuela, and Brazil—braved the scorching heat to have the opportunity to learn more about ITER science, machine assembly, and manufacturing. In the European magnet winding facility on the platform, visitors were walked through the steps of transforming coiled spools of superconductor into the large ring magnets that girdle the ITER machine; inside the climate-controlled Assembly Hall, they saw two of the subsections of the ITER plasma chamber in various stages of equipment and pre-assembly and a whole host of mammoth tools created especially to handle them.  

The visitors were passionate about what they saw. "What impresses us the most is the broad participation in this project—it seems the intelligence of the world is coming together in ITER! We were curious to see that expressed during the visit and we haven't been disappointed," said one French senior.

There was something for everyone: detailed explanations for the adults, pieces to touch and gifts for the younger generation. In the Poloidal Field Coil Winding Facility, Europe is finalizing the last two ring-shaped magnets for the ITER Tokamak. (Click to view larger version...)
There was something for everyone: detailed explanations for the adults, pieces to touch and gifts for the younger generation. In the Poloidal Field Coil Winding Facility, Europe is finalizing the last two ring-shaped magnets for the ITER Tokamak.
A younger visitor was fascinated by the components on display, agreeing that the building blocks of the poloidal field coils (the double pancakes) actually look like pancakes and comparing the vacuum vessel sectors to large ears... or other larger but similarly smooth and rounded parts of human anatomy.

Inside of the ITER Visitors Centre, guests for the day were offered explicative videos, a virtual reality simulation and—most of all—the explanations of dozens of ITER scientists, engineers and project managers. Several exhibits for children were also popular, including marshmallow-shrinking vacuum experiments and a discovery truck set up by the local scientific association Les Petits Débrouillards (The little crafty ones).

For this first "in person" Open Door Day since September 2019, the enthusiasm was intact on both sides. The ITER "volunteers" enjoyed showcasing the major operations that have been performed during this more-than-two-year intermission, and the public could hardly believe how much progress had been accomplished despite the constraints of the pandemic. All in all, this 16th edition of the ITER Open Doors Day felt like a happy reunion.



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