Ceramics for JET & ITER

Working with some of the world’s brightest minds, all focused on achieving a single goal, is sometimes not easy when you are required to supply some of the biggest and most accurate highest temperature advanced ceramic components with extreme properties. Despite these exacting standards, the physicists must have what they need which leaves companies like Precision Ceramics stretching the boundaries of what can be achieved.

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC), The Joint European Torus (JET) and the big new project ITER (International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor), the world’s biggest fusion reactor experiment, are some of the largest and most adventurous projects currently in progress. The ITER Project is based in France but supported and funded by over 35 countries and in size, scale and cost could replace nuclear fission with a cleaner less polluting fusion energy system.

Thousands of engineers and scientists have contributed to the design of ITER since the idea for an international joint experiment in fusion was first launched in 1985. The ITER Members China, the European Union, India, Japan, Korea, Russia and the United Kingdom K and the United States – are now engaged in a 35-year collaboration to build and operate the ITER experimental device, and together bring fusion to the point where a demonstration fusion reactor can be designed.

The collaboration of so many nations from all over the world reinforces the level of importance and prestige of this development and some of the statistics are simply mind-blowing: The system runs at up to 150,000,000°C which is hotter than the core of the sun! Contained in an electromagnetic field, the plasma is confined in a giant doughnut shaped vessel and this is by no means science fiction. Currently it is possible, but to become viable, the scale needs increasing and the ITER project is designed to do just this.