The Joint European Torus (JET), is up and running again under a new management structure at the UKAEA’s Culham site. Teams of European scientists will carry out fusion experiments using the facility.
The JET facilities are now operated under a new agreement between the European Atomic Energy Community and its associates from all European Union member states and Switzerland - all parties to the European Fusion Development Agreement (EFDA-JET). Under this framework UKAEA was given a contract from the EU to operate the machine. It was officially handed over to the UKAEA after the termination of the JET Joint Undertaking on 1 January 2000.
Since then scientists from the European Associates Laboratories have prepared an experimental programme and the operator team at Culham has been working to get the machine ready for the first experimental campaign.
Use of the JET facilities and the experimental programme are co-ordinated by the EFDA-JET associate leader Dr Jérôme Paméla and his support unit, based at Culham. Experimental campaigns are planned for the next three years. “Under the EFDA structure JET is operated as a kind of ‘users’ facility’,” said Paméla, “with scientists coming from all over Europe to conduct experiments over a few weeks or months. The programme is strongly-focused and co-ordinated in preparation of a common goal, with the next fusion experimental step, ITER, under design.”