The European Commissioner for Research, Dr. Janez Potočnik, made his first visit to the JET facilities on 3 March together with Members of Cabinet, Mr. Matjaz Malgaj, Mrs. Charlotte Haentzel and his spokeswoman Mrs. Antonia Mochan. The Commissioner was given a presentation by Prof. Sir Chris Llewellyn Smith (Chairman of the EURATOM Consultative Committee for Fusion, CCE-Fu) on fusion and the Fast Track. Prof. Carlos Varandas (Chairman of the EFDA Steering Committee) presented EFDA and the role of the Associations in the fusion programme followed by a presentation on JET by Dr. Jérôme Paméla (EFDA Associate Leader for JET).

After touring the JET facilities, which included a visit to the Torus Hall, Remote Handling and Tritium Storage facility, Dr. Potočnik addressed about 150 fusion scientists working at Culham. The speech was also broadcasted to other EFDA partners including amongst others CEA Cadarache and the Associations EURATOM-IPP Garching, Lisbon and Prague through the JET computer network system and internet.

Find the full version of the speech at:

Speaking about energy, the Commissioner said “(…) we should strive to have a sustainable energy mix. Fusion energy is certainly one of the major elements of this mix that we should be working to place at the disposal of future generations.” He went on to say that “in many respects the European Fusion Programme is a model for the European Research Area. The experience the EU has gained in managing a highly complex scientific and technological programme such as JET gives us confidence to embark, in partnership with the leading fusion programmes throughout the world, on the next step towards the realisation of fusion.” And about ITER he made it clear that “We spared no effort to find consensus among the six negotiating parties to realise ITER at Cadarache. (…) I have proposed to our Japanese partners to sit together and find an acceptable compromise at the high political level.”

A meeting with the chairmen of all Fusion Committees and the EFDA Leadership, led by Dr. Alexander Bradshaw, chairman of the Group of Chairmen (GoC), concluded the afternoon visit.