ITER Korea was established in 2003 when the Republic of Korea formally joined the ITER project. In September 2007, it was formally designated as the Korean Domestic Agency. ITER Korea today has a staff of 47 full-time employees, 23 contract employees and 19 temporary interns who all work in a dedicated facility for ITER Korea.
Actual procurement of items for ITER started with the signing of the Procurement Arrangement (PA) for the TF Conductor on 7 May 2008. By January and March of 2009, contracts for cabling and strand manufacturing were respectively established with local industries. Manufacturing of strand is currently in full progress.
In November 2008, the PAs for the main Vacuum Vessel and the Equatorial and Lower Ports were signed with the expectation that we would proceed with the call-for-tender by March 2009. However, as was previously reported, an alternate design for the vacuum vessel was proposed with a subsequent comparative review which delayed progress until July of this year. With the final decision last month to proceed with the reference design, the call-for-tender for the vacuum vessel will finally take place in September. Contract signing with industry is planned before the end of the year.
Most recently, the PA for Assembly Tooling was signed on 3 August 2009; call-for-tender and contract signing is expected by September and December respectively. This would bring the total signed Korean PA commitments to ITER to more than 60% of all procurement packages allocated to Korea based on ITER Units of Account (kIUA). The signature of the PA for the Thermal Shield, expected in November, will bring the total to more than 70%. Progress on the remaining Korean procurement packages such as the Tritium SDS, Diagnostics, Blanket and AC/DC Converters is proceeding on schedule.
ITER Korea fully appreciates the significance of ITER's mission towards human prosperity and will work toward the joint goal of completing ITER with First Plasma by 2018 as scheduled. return to Newsline #94