India delivering components for largest fusion energy project

Gandhinagar :India has started delivering components for a multi-national project to build world’s largest fusion device for carbon-free energy in France.

“So far we have delivered less than 10 per cent of total components,” said Dheeraj Bora, director of Gandhinagar-based Institute for Plasma Research (IPR), which is handling the Indian part of the ITER (International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor) project. India has so far earmarked Rs 2,500 crore for the project, and IPR has sought more funds, Bora said at a press conference here.

The project will pave the way for a new form of clean energy through processes that undergo inside the Sun and the stars. It is expected to be ready by December 2025, he said.

India is supposed to contribute 9 per cent of components, or 15 packages. Other countries involved in the project are European Union, China, Japan, South Korea, Russia and the US.

Private companies such as Larsen & Tubro Hazira, L&T Construction Chennai, INOX India Limited Vadodara, Linde India Limited Kolkata and ATL Bangalore are building components including Cryosat, cooling water systems, vessel in-wall shielding blocks, radio frequency heating sources, cryo distribution and cryolines, power supplies, diagnostic neutral beam system and diagnostic systems.

“First set of vessel shield has been sent to South Korea, cooling water system has been shipped, beam dump has been delivered, and parts of Cryosat have also been delivered. Components of Cryosat’s base section of around 500 tons were the first of the ITER machine core components to be delivered at ITER site (in France) in December 2015,” Bora said.

Director of communication of the ITER, Laban Coblentz, said that India is making “on schedule delivery of components,” and is a “fantastic partner.”

“Fusion is going to change the nature of how we produce electricity..This scientific collaboration is a large-scale experiment to show feasibility of fusion energy. December 2025 is the new schedule for the completion of the project. Cryosat is the biggest contribution that India is making. India is a fantastic partner and is pretty on-schedule on delivery,” he said.