Chinese team to build core of world’s largest artificial sun

Aerial shot of large development facility which will house the ITER artificial sun project
Site where the ITER project will be developed

The world’s largest “artificial sun” will be built by the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) Organisation and the China-France consortium led by China Nuclear Power Engineering (CNPE), which has signed on to install the Sector Modules Sub-Assembly (SMSA).

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This is the second time a Chinese organisation has undertaken the task of installing its core equipment after successfully undertaking its TAC-1 contract, and the Chinese will once again contribute wisdom and strength to the smooth advancement of the ITER project.

The light and heat on which everything on Earth relies for growth comes from the energy released by nuclear fusion reactions in the sun. The ITER project is designed to simulate the fusion process of the sun’s heat and light, and to explore the feasibility of commercialisation of controlled fusion technology.

ITER is a TOKAMAK machine capable of generating large-scale nuclear fusion reactions, known as the world’s largest “artificial sun”, and is jointly implemented by China, the European Union, India, Japan, South Korea, Russia and the United States.

CNNC has been actively involved in the development of the world’s largest “Artificial Sun”, and in September 2019, the China-French consortium led by CNPE signed the TAC-1 installation contract with ITER, marking the beginning of China’s in-depth participation in the TOKAMAK, the “heart” of the experimental reactor which is the installation of the core equipment of the TOKAMAK device.

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Along with the company, collaborative innovation consortium of 25 entities and led by CNNC will help overcome key challenges in nuclear fusion field. China aims to build an industrial prototype fusion reactor by 2035 and have the technology in large-scale commercial use by 2050.

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