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Bon voyage et au revoir!

-Sabina Griffith

They will have to wait another nine years and three months before they will see their Single-Malts again: Norbert Holtkamp, Hiroshi Matsumoto and Eisuke Tada at their farewell party this week. (Click to view larger version...)
They will have to wait another nine years and three months before they will see their Single-Malts again: Norbert Holtkamp, Hiroshi Matsumoto and Eisuke Tada at their farewell party this week.
This must be a tough challenge. You are given a bottle of precious Single Malt Whiskey... you are allowed to hold it and to look at it for one minute...and then you have to give it away again — for another nine years and three months to be precise. Norbert Holtkamp, Hiroshi Matsumoto and Eisuke Tada will only get to see their farewell presents again in November 2019, when ITER will launch into what Gary Johnson called "the biggest celebration in the history of the project": First Plasma.

Deputy Director-General Gary Johnson explained where the money for the presents came from: the doll had served as piggybank for all the euros that people had had to donate for showing up late to the project's weekly Project Progress Meeting. (Click to view larger version...)
Deputy Director-General Gary Johnson explained where the money for the presents came from: the doll had served as piggybank for all the euros that people had had to donate for showing up late to the project's weekly Project Progress Meeting.
It was up to the Deputy Director-General to lead the ceremony for the three people that are about to leave the ITER Organization. The former Head of the ITER Office of Central Integration Eisuke Tada, involved in the ITER project ever since the early days of the ITER Conceptual Design Activities, is "leaving the Organization, but not the project", as he stressed. He will be working for the Japanese Domestic Agency JA-DA. Hiroshi Matsumoto, the former Head of the Office of the Director-General and also involved in fusion and the ITER project for decades, is moving to Rokkasho, Japan, the site where the Broader Approach is taking shape.

Some coins were left inside the piggybank doll to give Norbert Holtkamp ''a head start'' for his new project. (Click to view larger version...)
Some coins were left inside the piggybank doll to give Norbert Holtkamp ''a head start'' for his new project.
And finally it was up to Norbert Holtkamp, the former Principal Deputy Director-General of the ITER project, to say "au revoir" to the assembled ITER team. After a five-year excursion into the field of fusion, the accelerator physicist is moving back to his place of origin to take over responsibilities at Stanford University. "Keep your goal in mind," Norbert Holtkamp said, "it is a worthwhile goal to be working for. Bon voyage!"


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