World's largest nuclear fusion reactor to be built with Intergraph technology

Source: Intergraph

ITER (meaning "the way" in Latin), a global organization of the European Union, China, Russia, Japan, India, South Korea and the United States, currently is building the world's largest and most advanced experimental nuclear fusion reactor in Cadarache, France, has selected Intergraph's SmartPlant® Enterprise suite of products to handle the assembly, commissioning and construction of the plant, as well as its operations and maintenance. 

ITER is based on the 'tokamak' concept of magnetic confinement, in which the plasma is contained in a doughnut-shaped vacuum vessel. The fuel—a mixture of deuterium and tritium, two isotopes of hydrogen—is heated to temperatures in excess of 150 million°C, forming a hot plasma. Strong magnetic fields are used to keep the plasma away from the walls; these are produced by superconducting coils surrounding the vessel, and by an electrical current driven through the plasma.

ITER: the world's largest planned Tokamak

The agreement comprises implementation of SmartPlant Enterprise solutions such as SmartPlant Foundation, SmartPlant Construction, SmartPlant Materials and SmartPlant Enterprise for Owner Operators.

The construction of the site and buildings has already started, and the contributing countries are starting the manufacturing of the equipment, such as super-conducting conductors. During the plant design, construction and completion/start-up phase, SmartPlant Enterprise for Owner Operators will provide preconfigured processes to support engineering and project execution work processes, and SmartPlant Foundation will play a key role in data synchronization and data sharing. The project will benefit from synchronized information and centralized data that SmartPlant Enterprise offers to better manage work processes, control equipment and maintenance, coordinate contractors and manage change. The organization aims to build an efficient and safe plant that can provide energy to an increasingly demanding world.

The project will see the first equipment being delivered on site from 2014, starting with the Tokamak assembly in 2015. The construction is to be complete in 2019 and targeting first operation in 2020. Once this experimental reactor is complete, every contributing country will have the right to build fusion plants. 

Visit PennEnergy's comprehensive Nuclear Generation topic center to access the most up to date industry focused articles and reports.

"Intergraph was chosen as the preferred supplier because of the combination of knowledge, people skills and tools it presented for this project," explains Ken Blackler, head of Assembly and Operations Division. ITER will be the world's first licensed nuclear fusion device and therefore Intergraph's footprint in the nuclear power generation sector, with more than 20 years of experience, played an important role in the final decision making.

Gerhard Sallinger, Intergraph Process, Power & Marine president, said, "ARC Advisory Group recently ranked Intergraph PP&M as the leading global engineering design provider to the electric power generation market. The ITER fusion reactor project is a major win for Intergraph in the power industry, and it will strengthen our already vigorous and enduring position in this sector globally."

SmartPlant Enterprise for Owner Operators is specifically designed for asset owners with an integrated suite of design and data management solutions to enhance plant safety, reliability, and interoperability, while ensuring information integrity across the owner operator system landscape. SmartPlant Construction is the innovative, integrated Intergraph solution for construction planners, and it offers dynamic work package planning, construction sequencing, and reporting to streamline and integrate engineering for improved CAPEX efficiency. It benefits the entire engineering, procurement, construction, and operations value chain for maximum construction readiness.

The ARC Advisory Group, a leading industry analyst firm, ranked Intergraph as the No. 1 overall worldwide provider of engineering design solutions for industry according to its "Engineering Design Tools for Industry and Infrastructure Worldwide Outlook Market Analysis and Forecast Through 2016."

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