During its ninth meeting in Cadarache, France (November 17-18), the ITER Council confirmed that the experimental fusion project is within the schedule and cost decided in July 2010. This would see first plasma in November 2019, with the start of Deuterium-Tritium operation planned for March 2027.
The ITER Council is the governing body of the ITER Organization and is made up of representatives from the seven ITER members: China, the European Union, India, Japan, Korea, Russia and the United States.
The Council noted the successful efforts to advance ITER design and construction, contain costs and minimize delays, especially in the face of the Great East Japan earthquake. To date 60 Procurement Arrangements have been signed, representing 71.5% of the total procurement value of ITER construction, the Council said.
Council members were also informed on the positive outcome of the public inquiry. On 19 September, the public inquiry commission issued a ‘favourable’ opinion on the ITER project, a key step towards the full licensing of ITER.
The meeting of the ITER Council was chaired by Academician Evgeny Velikhov. Dr. Hideyuki Takatsu of Japan will succeed him as Chairman of the ITER Council on 1 January 2012. The next ITER Council meeting will take place in June 2012.