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ITER scaled back, fusion power further delayed

Posted on Saturday, May 30 2009 @ 09:07:40 CEST by

Nature published an article about the latest plans for ITER, the first fusion reactor experiment that aims to generate more energy than it consumes. Unfortunately, it's no good news. ITER will be far less ambitious than scientists had hoped, and the first experiments capable of validating fusion for power aren't slated until late 2025, five years later than anticipated.
Faced with ballooning costs and growing delays, ITER's seven partners are likely to build only a skeletal version of the device at first. The project's governing council said last June that the machine should turn on in 2018; the stripped-down version could allow that to happen (see Nature 453, 829; 2008). But the first experiments capable of validating fusion for power would not come until the end of 2025, five years later than the date set when the ITER agreement was signed in 2006.



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