- International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) is an international totamak (magnetic confinement fusion) research/engineering project designed to prove the scientific and technological feasibility of a full-scale fusion power reactor.
- ITER is the next major experiment in the quest for fusion energy in which 500MW of fusion power would be produced, about 10 times more than the input power of 50 MW.
- The program is anticipated to last for 30 years – 10 years for construction and 20 years of operation and cost about 10 billion euro (US$12. 1 billion), making it one of the most expensive modern techno-scientific megaprojects.
- ITER will be based in Cadarache, France. It is technically ready to start construction and the first plasma operation is expected in 2016.
- The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) project admitted India as a full partner into the consortium. The decision was taken at the ongoing ITER Negotiations at Jeju, Republic of Korea. The ambitious multi-billion dollar project is aimed at demonstrating the scientific and technologoical feasibility of controlled nuclear fusion as a future source of energy.
- The partners in the project i.e. the ITER parties are the European union representation by EURATOM, Japan, the People’s Republic of China, the Republic of Korea, the Russian federation and the United States of America.
- India is the seventh participating member of ITER.
- India started its fusion research with the design and engineering of its first tokamak ADITYA in 1862. With the commissioning of ADITYA in 1989, full-fledged tokamak experiments started.
- In 1995, the decision to build the second-generation tokamak, namely the Superconducting Steady State tokamak (SST-1), for plasma confining times longer than the record duration achieved so far, was taken.
ITER web address: http://www.iter.org/