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News & Media

Latest ITER Newsline

  • Gravity supports | First production unit in China

    Bolted in a perfect circle to the pedestal ring of the cryostat base, 18 gravity supports will brace the curved outer edge of each toroidal field coil. These un [...]

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  • Conference | Fun-filled vacuum

    The science of ITER is not simple. But with a bit of imagination (and a dose of humour) a way can be found to convey the most complex physics notions to a publi [...]

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  • Naive question of the week | What happens to the car keys?

    We begin today a new series that aims to answer basic, even naive, questions about fusion and ITER. An image used often, when trying to convey the amount of e [...]

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  • Metrology | Facing the millimetre test

    In the realm of the very large at ITER, some of the biggest challenges are lurking down in the millimetre range. Within the Assembly Building a massive struct [...]

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  • Fusion research in Europe | Working it out together

    In Europe, fusion research is structured around a goal-oriented roadmap that closely involves universities, research laboratories and industry. Sibylle Günter, [...]

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Of Interest

See archived articles

Blasting, comfort, and the colour of champagne!

Krista Dulon

The united colours of ITER will eventually merge into champagne and orange. (Click to view larger version...)
The united colours of ITER will eventually merge into champagne and orange.
On Tuesday lunchtime, the windows rattled, the office buildings trembled and coffee sloshed around in cups. We had been warned, however: blasting operations have recommenced on the ITER platform for a period of approximately two weeks to complete the excavation for the Hot Cell Facility.

The Hot Cell Facility will be contiguous to the Tokamak Complex. Its foundations—less profound than those of its immediate neighbour—nonetheless require final blasting to finish the contours before foundation work begins.

The contractor responsible for excavation and foundation works, GTM Construction, is erecting a tower crane at each of the four corners of the Tokamak Complex area prior to concrete pouring works which are scheduled to begin in May and last the rest of the year.

At the peak of construction activity on the platform some 20 of these tower cranes will be in action, spread over the different work sites. The four silos of the on-site concrete batching plant are ready for the continuous ballet of trucks that will soon be seen loading, delivering, returning to wait in line, loading, delivering...

The workers involved with this heavy construction activity will of course need access to "comfort" facilities including locker rooms and a space for lunch. The European Domestic Agency is currently installing a staircase leading directly down from the platform to the comfort zone, some 60 steps below. From 70 today, the number of workers will rise steeply within the next months.

Concrete pouring works in the Tokamak Complex area are scheduled to begin in May and last the rest of the year. (Click to view larger version...)
Concrete pouring works in the Tokamak Complex area are scheduled to begin in May and last the rest of the year.
On the far side of the platform, the Poloidal Field Coils Winding Facility has taken on some of the colours of the ITER Member flags...but not for long. The red, green, blue and yellow metal sheets that can be seen on the south side of the building and that form part of the exterior cladding will soon be covered by sheets of another colour.

Five layers in all have been planned to isolate the poloidal field coil work space—where cleanliness is a priority—from the dust of the platform: an inner layer of sheeting containing small holes to absorb work area noise; insulation; and finally three layers of metal sheets sealed with tape for dust proofing.

Once completed, the Poloidal Field Coils Winding Facility will be champagne and orange coloured.


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