Kurchatov Institute signs contract for Iter superconductor

14 February 2008

The Kurchatov Institute is to supply a superconductor for the toroidal field magnet system of the Iter fusion project to be built at Cadarache, France.


Nuclear.Ru reported that the agreement - the first basic contract signed under the Iter project - was signed on 12 February by the deputy director general of the Iter Organization, Norbert Holtkamp, and the president of Russian Reaseach Centre Kurchatov Institute, Yevgeny Velikhov.
According to the agreement, the Kurchatov Institute will manufacture the superconductor, deliver it to Cadarache and then test it.
The Iter device is based on the tokamak concept, in which a hot gas is confined in a torus-shaped vessel using a magnetic field. The gas is heated to over 100 million degrees, and will produce 500 MW of fusion power.
China, the European Union (EU), India, Japan, Russia, South Korea, and the USA are cooperating to build Iter. The six partners agreed in mid 2005 to site Iter at Cadarache. The deal involved major concessions to Japan, which had put forward Rokkasho as a preferred site. The EU and France will contribute half of the €12.8 billion ($18.7 billion) total cost, with the other partners - Japan, China, South Korea, USA and Russia - putting in 10% each. Japan will provide a lot of the high-tech components, will host a €1 billion ($1.5 billion) materials testing facility and will have the right to host a subsequent demonstration fusion reactor. The total cost of Iter comprises about half for the ten-year construction and half for 20 years of operation.