The structure, which will house one of the largest and most ambitious energy experiments ever built, was built after engineers working at ITER Tokamak Building lifted the last tower to a suitable position, foreign media reported.
The nine-year construction of the facility, which will be built to use the ultra-high temperature and high-speed reaction inside the sun, is expected to advance decades of pursuit of clean, inexhaustible nuclear fusion energy.
It is understood that the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER), a nuclear fusion reactor called tokamak, has been under construction since 1985 and involves thousands of scientists and engineers from 35 countries. These doughnut-shaped devices are designed to accommodate a circular stream of plasma made up of hydrogen atoms, which releases a lot of energy when compressed and fused by superconducting magnets.
However, scientists still have some key technical challenges to overcome in the Tokamak reactor. The main one is how to raise them to the desired temperature so that the plasma flow stays in place long enough to cause the reaction to occur.
Although there are a number of Tokamak experimental devices operating around the world and continuing to move towards actual nuclear fusion power generation goals, no one, figuratively or literally, can reach the height of THE ITER. Vinci, the construction company behind Tokamak Building, has just completed the final project of the 73-meter-high Tokamak reactor, which will become the largest tokamak reactor on Earth.
ITER can hold 11 times the thickness of the plasma at the largest Tokamak reactor today. The reason for building such a large experimental device is simple — the larger the plasma flow, the greater the chance of a nuclear fusion reaction.
ITER in France
It is understood that the tokamak reactor’s maximum capacity to date is 16 megawatts, a record set by the UK’s Joint European Torus Tokamak reactor in 1997. The ITER research team’s target is 500 megawatts. And with the construction work completed, workers will soon begin assembling the millions of components that make up the reactor. The work is expected to take five years, and the team hopes to achieve the first plasma by 2025.