General Atomics Congratulates ITER on the Start of Machine Assembly

President Xi sends congratulatory message to start of ITER Assembly

"ITER is a promise of peace", he added.

An global project to recreate the Sun's energy has entered a new phase as assembly of a nuclear fusion reactor gets underway in southern France.

Modi added that India stands proud with its fair share of contributions in terms of its in-kind contributions, like the cryostat, in vessel shields, substantial contributions to the cooling water, cryogenic and cryo-distribution systems, auxiliary heating devices using RF and beam technologies, multi megawatt power supplies and several diagnostics to help ITER to achieve and demonstrate its goal. ITER perfectly demonstrates this duality: "it is a major investment in our high-tech industries and clean energy sources for the future", the Commissioner said, stressing the importance of continuing to support projects like the ITER during the COVID-19 pandemic.

A virtual ceremony of the start of the assembly was held on Tuesday at ITER headquarter in Southern France with French President Emmanuel Macron and government leaders from China, Europe, India, Japan, South Korea, Russia, and the attendance.

The project is the most complex engineering endeavour in history.

Japan is in charge of producing the reactor's main parts, including one of the world's largest superconducting coils to confine the high-temperature plasma necessary for nuclear fusion to occur.

If the project succeeds, the humankind could enjoy a new, efficient and safe energy source.

"Today we celebrate more than just a technical milestone", said European Commissioner for Energy Kadri Simson in her video speech to representatives from all of the ITER members attending the celebration ceremony either in-person at the ITER site or virtually via livestream.

The launch of ITER assembly phase is made possible by the arrival of components from all over the world in recent months.

'Constructing the machine piece by piece will be like assembling a three-dimensional puzzle on an intricate timeline, ' Dr Bigot continued, comparing the intricate workings of ITER to that of a Swiss timepiece.

"We have a complicated script to follow over the next few years", he said.

The project's estimated cost just for the European Union was about 20 billion euros ($23.5 billion), Bigot told reporters.

A commercial fusion plant will be designed with a slightly larger plasma chamber, for 10-15 times more electrical power.

Furthermore, the fuel for fusion is found in seawater and lithium, abundant enough to supply humanity for millions of years.

If the technology proves feasible, future fusion reactors would be capable of powering two million homes each at an operational cost comparable to those of conventional nuclear reactors, Bigot said.

The facility is meant to produce about 500 megawatts of thermal power, translating into about 200 megawatts of electric energy if operated continuously, or enough to power some 200,000 homes.

"A pineapple-sized amount of this fuel is the equivalent of 10,000 tonnes of coal", the statement said.



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