Dear Reader

As this year comes to an end, I would like to share with you a few recollections together with thoughts on the future. At the beginning of 2008 a machine refurbishment and enhancement phase (shutdown) came to completion, mainly aimed at the in-vessel installation of the diagnostics and the ITER-like heating antenna all developed in the framework of the Enhancement Programme 1 (EP1). This shutdown brought to completion the effort launched at the very beginning of EFDA to substantially improve the JET technical and scientific capabilities.

The experimental campaigns have allowed a significant number of experiments to be carried out throughout the year, with many key results of direct relevance to ITER construction and exploitation. These outstanding results led to a substantial JET contribution to many international conferences in 2008.

It is important to stress that the JET achievements have only been possible thanks to the dedication of the Operator of the JET Facilities, the European Associations, and the many contributors from the non European countries collaborating with JET. I would like to express my sincere thanks to all and, in particular, to my close collaborators in the Close Support Unit at Culham.

We are made wise not by the recollection of our past, but by the responsibility for our future.

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

The year 2008 has also been crucial for the discussion about the future of JET. At the level of the EFDA Steering Committee a resolution was unanimously approved that implies running JET beyond 2010. Furthermore, the International Panel for the review of the facilities required in the European Fusion Programme has concluded that “JET needs to operate until 2014/15 at least.”

Although much effort has been invested in 2008, the next year will require the best from all the people involved. In fact 2009 will see the start of the shutdown for the final implementation stage of the Enhancement Programme 2. So while congratulating the entire team for the outstanding achievements in 2008, I look forward to them committing with me to the success of 2009.

Wishing you and your family a Merry Christmas and a new year full of health and success.

Francesco Romanelli