The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) experimental fusion reactor is a utility-scale scientific experiment designed to test the feasibility of fusion as an energy source. It is currently under construction in Cadarache, in the south of France. 35 countries are taking part in the project, under the leadership of seven main members: the EU, India, Japan, Russia, the US, South Korea and China.
The ITER nuclear fusion reactor will not produce electrical power. Its aim is to resolve critical scientific and technical issues so that nuclear fusion can be used in industrial applications. Its gain factor is estimated to be 10, i.e. for every 50 MW of input, the reactor will produce 500 MW of output.
Construction started in 2010. In addition to having started construction of the buildings, the project has made the transition from design to the manufacturing of large models and components. As from mid-2014, large size components started to be delivered to the project site for their assembly from different manufacturing plants distributed all over the world. The commissioning phase is scheduled for 2024, the first plasma in 2025 and the start of fusion operation in 2035.
Vilfer Electric has once again played its part in leading global projects, participating in the construction of the ITER project with the design and supply of low and medium voltage busbars. On this occasion, the company is supplying busbars from transformer to switchboard with the ISOBUSBAR© IMT 7.2/31 type, designed for an intensity of 3,200 A and 7.2 kV of insulation voltage; and ISOBUSBAR© ISC-2071 type low voltage transformer/ switchboard connections, designed for 2,000 A with an insulation voltage of 1kV; all in line with the strict quality standards required in a project of this nature.