Paving the way for European Fusion Research: The EFDA Steering Committee at its March Meeting in Aachen, Germany.

On 21 June 2007 the first meeting of the Steering Committee of the Broader Approach Agreement between Japan and the EU was held in Tokyo. The Steering Committee took its first decisions on the work programmes for the activities to be undertaken under the Agreement and on the appointment of the Secretariat and the Project Leaders.

The Broader Approach Agreement entered into force on 1st of June 2007. This co-operation comprises three large research projects to be jointly implemented, aiming at supporting the ITER project and at an early realisation of fusion energy as a clean and sustainable source of energy for peaceful purposes, and will be open to participation of other ITER Parties. The three projects are the Engineering Validation and Engineering Design Activities for the International Fusion Materials Irradiation Facility (IFMIF/EVEDA), the International Fusion Energy Research Centre (IFERC), and third the Satellite Tokamak Programme.

The first two projects will be carried out at Rokkasho, Aomori; the third project will be carried out at Naka, Ibaraki

The Steering Committee also appointed the Project Leaders for the three projects. They are Dr. Pascal Garin for IFMIF, Mr Shinishi Ishida for the Satellite Tokamak-Programme JT60-SA and Mr Masanori Araki for IFERC.

The Broader Approach activities will be financed in equal parts by EURATOM and Japan. On the EURATOM side, apart from a contribution from Community funds the projects will be implemented with voluntary contributions from France, Italy, Spain, Germany, and Switzerland. Belgium is currently studying the possibility of making a voluntary contribution as well. Contributions will be made in the form of in-kind equipment, studies and by seconding staff for projects in a Japan.

The next meeting of the Steering Committee will take place in Barcelona/ Spain on 29 November 2007.