Bernard Bigot: Work On The Assembly Of The ITER Thermonuclear Reactor Started In France
Specialists have started building the international experimental thermonuclear reactor ITER, which construction is to be completed by 2025. This was stated by the General Director of the project, Bernard Bigot, at a ceremony on the occasion of the start of work in the French commune of Saint-Paul-Le-durance.
"After many years of preparation and a huge amount of effort on the part of all project participants, we are ready to start assembling the tokamak (a toroidal chamber with magnetic coils). We have recently received many key components of ITER, so we will begin to assemble the reactor while continuing scientific and engineering work. Other components of the installation will arrive at the site in the next two years," Bigot said.
The ceremony, which is being held at the French Research Center Cadarache, is attended by French President Emmanuel Macron and other officials of the countries that are involved in the creation of ITER, as well as Rosatom CEO Alexey Likhachev.
Each participating country is responsible for the production and delivery of the systems that they have committed to creating as part of the project, providing a 9% contribution to the cost of building the reactor. It is expected that the construction of the reactor will be completed in 2025. Then ITER participants expect to get the first plasma, which will confirm the operation of thermonuclear reactors in practice.
According to current plans, ITER will generate about 500 MW of heat and about 200 MW of electricity.
The future of thermonuclear energy
The ITER project involves China, the European Union, India, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Russia, and the United States. The reactor is based on the tokamak installation, which is considered the most promising device for controlled thermonuclear fusion. The goal of the project is to demonstrate that thermonuclear energy can be used on an industrial scale.
The scale of ITER can be compared to projects such as the international space station and the Large hadron Collider. The Russian side is engaged in manufacturing and supplying 25 high-tech systems for future installation. The reactor is being built in the South of France, near the Cadarache research center.