ITER implements global procurement and manufacturing
The ITER Directors, Council Chairmen, and Heads of Delegation convening for the group photo of the fifth ITER Council meeting: Evgeny Velikhov; ITER Director-General Kaname Ikeda; Jianlin Cao; Yasutaka Moriguchi; William Brinkman; Ravi Bhushan Grover; Council Chair Sir Christopher Llewellyn Smith; Bob Iotti; José Manuel Silva Rodriguez; Michael Roberts; Predhiman Kaw; Frank Briscoe; Igor Borovkov; Gyung Su Lee; Hiroshi Nagano; ITER Principal Deputy Director-General Norbert Holtkamp; Hai Joo Moon; Sachiko Ishizaka; and Satoshi Konichi.
On 18-19 November, the ITER Council, the governing body of the ITER Organization, convened for its fifth meeting. The two-day meeting in Cadarache, France, brought together representatives from the seven ITER Members: China, the European Union, India, Japan, Korea, Russia and the United States.
The meeting opened with a statement from Valérie Pecresse, French Research and Higher Education Minister, and Pierre Lellouche, French State Secretary for European Affairs, welcoming the delegates to Cadarache and stressing the importance of ITER: "Success in demonstrating how to control nuclear fusion energy in the next decades, could change for the better the way we all live on Earth and allow next generations to benefit from abundant and infinite forms of energy, respectful to our planet's functioning. What is at stake is thus clearly essential to everyone living on Earth, at a time when we are all preparing Copenhagen's summit to decide how to mitigate the risks of climate changes and preserve the quality of our environment."
The ITER Council at work in the new conference centre at the Chateau in Cadarache.
Further discussion of the schedule was held during the Cadarache meeting to establish a realistic schedule, acceptable to all Members, taking into consideration technical and cost risks. Council requested the ITER Organization, building on the work previously done in support of the Updated Schedule, to determine by the end of February 2010 an "early date" for first plasma by incorporating the probability that the risk mitigation approaches that are currently being pursued will be successful and reflecting a schedule that the Domestic Agencies assess is realistically achievable. Council also asked the ITER Organization to develop a late-finish date, considering all risks that each structure system or components have, by consultation with the Domestic Agencies and their industries. Throughout the discussion all Members agreed on the primary importance of achieving deuterium/tritium operation as early as realistically possible.
Council adopted the 2010 ITER Organization Budget of EUR 174.8 million. Council noted that manufacturing for ITER has begun: contracts have been signed with industries in all ITER Members to build elements of the machine or site installations. ITER Director-General Kaname Ikeda commented: "ITER has made strong progress. We are now moving into the very exciting phase of global procurement and manufacturing."
The ITER Council also reviewed reports from subsidiary bodies that outline the progress on subjects such as: intellectual property management, the ITER Organization's budget for the next years, export control, peaceful uses of ITER technology and non-proliferation, the Test Blanket Module program, research cooperation and nuclear liability. Council also endorsed the recommendations of the Panel for Independent Assessment of the ITER Construction Resource Estimates.
The Korean delegation to the ITER Council.
Council considered carefully the broad scope of recommendations of the Management Assessment Team and set up a working group with the view of taking decisions on how to respond as quickly as possible.
Evgeny Velikhov , Russian Federation, was elected Chair of the ITER Council for the next term. Yuanxi Wan, China, was appointed Chair of Science and Technology Advisory Committee. Gyung Su Lee, Korea, was appointed Chair of Management Advisory Committee.
On behalf of the ITER Organization, Kaname Ikeda acknowledged the contribution of the outgoing chairs: "I would like to underline the outstanding work that has been done by the Chairs of Council, MAC and STAC, Sir Chris Llewellyn Smith, Bob Iotti and Predhiman Kaw. Their devotion to ITER and skills in bringing differing points of view into common agreement has laid the foundations for a strong and balanced project."