On 16 January 2002, an “EU Divertor Celebration Day” with 30 participants was organized at Plansee AG (Reutte, Austria) to mark the end of the successful manufacturing activities (undertaken by EFDA) for the ITER large R&D project on the divertor. Both Plansee AG and Ansaldo Ricerche (Genoa, Italy) contributed to the manufacturing activities.

During the ITER Engineering Design Activities (EDA) and the Coordinated Technical Activities (CTA), the EU Party has developed technologies for high heat flux applications, which meet and even exceed the design requirements. The result of this extensive R&D programme was the manufacturing of a complete set of prototypes for each divertor component, namely the vertical target, the dome liner and the cassette body.

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Other EURATOM Associations participating to the meeting:

CEA: Commissariat à l’Energie Atomique


ENEA: Ente per le Nuove Tecnologie, l’Energia e l’Ambiente


IPP: Max-Planck-Institut für Plasmaphysik


ÖAW: Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften


Among the participants in the event were Dr.M. Schwarzkopf (Chief Executive Officer of Plansee AG), Prof. A. Airaghi (President of Ansaldo Ricerche), Prof. K. Lackner (EFDA Leader), Dr. R. Aymar (ITER Director), who presented an overview of the ITER project and Dr. R. Andreani (EFDA Associate Leader for Technology), who outlined the activities envisaged on fusion technology during the 6th EU Research Framework Programme. Dr. R. Tivey (ITER Divertor Group Leader) showed the design of the different divertor components and summarized the impressive achievements obtained by the R&D activities carried out within this project. Dr. M. Merola, the EFDA Responsible Officer for Divertor Technology, remarked that the EU has shown a systematic capability to manufacture high heat flux components together with mastering the required non-destructive examination techniques and quality assurance procedures. Prof. Chung Wu, EFDA Responsible Officer for Plasma/Wall Interaction, summarized the EU development work on the carbon composites (reinforced with three-dimensional carbon fibres with high thermal conductivity) required for use in the vertical target.

The results of the event demonstrated, on the prototypical scale, that the ITER divertor can be manufactured. This allows the European Union to start the related procurement as soon as the decision on ITER construction is taken. The time period remaining until then will be used to optimize the fabrication processes and to develop more cost-effective alternatives.

The fabrication of the first vertical target prototype, on a medium scale, was completed. It contained all the main features of the corresponding ITER divertor design, and was high heat flux tested up to 20 MWm-2 for 2000 cycles without failure.

A full-scale section of the outboard divertor cassette body was also completed. This demonstrated the possibility of manufacturing this component by welded forged plates, rather than by casting with a corresponding drastic reduction in costs.

Near full-scale vertical target and dome liner prototypes were delivered.