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  • FEC2020 | Seeking sponsors for 28th IAEA Fusion Energy Conference

    For only the third time since 1961, the International Atomic Energy Agency's Fusion Energy Conference will be taking place in France—hosted jointly by the Frenc [...]

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  • Nuclear safety | Under constant scrutiny

    Because one of the elements involved in the fusion reaction is the radioactive isotope tritium, and because the hydrogen fusion reaction itself generates a high [...]

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  • Power conversion | Alien structures and strange contraptions

    There are places in ITER that seem to belong to another world, places full of alien structures and strange contraptions. The feeling—a mixture of awe and puzzle [...]

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  • Tokamak Complex | A changing landscape

    For the past three years, the view from the top of the highest worksite crane has not changed much. Inside of the Tokamak Complex, 80 metres below, concrete gal [...]

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  • Ion cyclotron heating | How to pump 20 MW of power into 1 gram of plasma

    To power the ion cyclotron system, the ITER Organization and its partners are designing not only new antennas, which will be housed in the tokamak vessel, but a [...]

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Of Interest

See archived entries

The largest fridge around

Sabina Griffith and Bharat Doshi, Cryostat Section Leader

Welded together from thick stainless steel plates measuring between 40 and 180 millimetres, the ITER cryostat will be the world's largest stainless steel high-vacuum chamber. (Click to view larger version...)
Welded together from thick stainless steel plates measuring between 40 and 180 millimetres, the ITER cryostat will be the world's largest stainless steel high-vacuum chamber.
This week, on Tuesday, 6 September, the Indian Domestic Agency ITER India signed the Procurement Arrangement for the ITER cryostat, which will be the world's largest high-vacuum chamber, worth approximately EUR 100 million. It is one of the project's largest procurements and thus represents a significant step towards the construction of ITER.

Welded together from thick stainless steel plates measuring between 40 and 180 millimetres, the cryostat forms the vacuum-tight container surrounding the ITER vacuum vessel and superconducting magnets. The massive structure will have to withstand a vacuum pressure of 1 x 10 -4 Pa; the pump volume is designed for 8,500 m³; and it will have a weight of 3,400 tonnes. It will have an outer diameter of 28.54 metres and be almost 30 metres tall.

The head of the Indian Domestic Agency, Shishir Deshpande, and his team signing the Procurement Arrangement this week. (Click to view larger version...)
The head of the Indian Domestic Agency, Shishir Deshpande, and his team signing the Procurement Arrangement this week.
The steel cylinder will have 23 penetrations allowing access inside of the cryostat for maintenance, as well as over 200 penetrations—some as large as four metres in size—providing access to the vacuum vessel for cooling systems, magnet feeders, auxiliary heating, diagnostics, and the removal of blanket and divertor parts. Large bellows are used between the cryostat and the vacuum vessel to allow for thermal contraction and expansion in the structures.

Due to size and weight limitations, the cryostat will be manufactured in segments in India and a sub-assembly of four sections will be prepared at ITER's site workshop. (Click to view larger version...)
Due to size and weight limitations, the cryostat will be manufactured in segments in India and a sub-assembly of four sections will be prepared at ITER's site workshop.
Due to size and weight limitations, the cryostat will be manufactured in segments in India and a sub-assembly of four sections will be prepared at ITER's site workshop. Finally, the four sections will be assembled into the Tokamak Pit.

The Cryostat Procurement Arrangement was number 59 on ITER's list, bringing to 71 percent the amount of in-kind procurements signed to date for the ITER Project.


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