Assembling of nuclear fusion reactor begins

President Xi sends congratulatory message to start of ITER Assembly

President Xi sends congratulatory message to start of ITER Assembly

They will now be painstakingly put together to complete what is described by ITER as the "world's largest puzzle".

In France, the assembly of the ITER (International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor), which will be the world's largest magnetic confinement plasma physics experiment, has started on July 28, 2020. If it is controlled, hydrogen fusion would be a safe and clean source of energy, making it possible to do away with fossil fuels.

At end of this period, in December 2025, ITER scientists and engineers will launch "First Plasma", the initial event demonstrating machine functionality.

The European Parliament voted on Tuesday (15 January) to extend the funding of an experimental fusion power reactor through to 2027, although some MEPs are still concerned about the multi-billion euro moon-shot that could revolutionise the way power is generated.

General view of the circular bioshield inside the construction site of the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) in Saint-Paul-lez-Durance, southern France, November 7, 2019.

The project is the most complex engineering endeavour in history.

"The clean energy transition is both an ethical necessity and an economic opportunity", she said.

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Besides Macron, leaders from the European Union, China, India, Japan, Korea, Russia, and the USA declared the start of a new energy era with the official start of the assembly of the world's largest fusion device at ITER. This includes putting together its huge superconducting magnets that are four floors high and weigh 360 tonnes each. "We have a complicated script to follow over the next few years".

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

An worldwide collaboration aiming to replicate the power of the sun within a reactor on Earth has reached its next milestone.

It could reach full power by 2035, but as an experimental project, it is not created to produce electricity. However, Bigot hopes to build future fusion reactors if the technology is proven feasible. Each reactor can power two million homes each at an operational cost similar to those of conventional nuclear machines. The decision to launch ITER, in the mid-2000s, was one of these moments.

The ITER plant is designed for 500 megawatt output, which if connected to a power grid translates into 200 MW of electricity, enough to provide power to 200,000 households. This will be an easy task as a pineapple-sized amount of fuel is comparable to 10,000 tonnes of coal.

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.

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

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