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Media Corner
25 September 2018

Director shows F4E’s ITER commitment at SOFT

F4E Director, Johannes Schwemmer, gave a dynamic keynote speech about the status of Europe’s contribution to ITER.

The Symposium on Fusion Technology (SOFT) brings together scientists, engineers, laboratories, industry and SMEs, policy-makers as well as the future generation of Europe's fusion community. It is the place to be to find out more about the state of play of current fusion experiments, technology breakthroughs and the progress of big projects like ITER. Every two years the most prominent fusion experts from around the globe meet for five days to discuss the progress of their work, present new breakthroughs, debate the future of their field and network  ̶  it is one of the most anticipated rendezvous of the fusion community. The 30th edition took place in Giardini Naxos in Sicily under the auspices of the Italian National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (ENEA), and brought together over 1000 international participants.

F4E Director, Johannes Schwemmer, opened the plenary session with a dynamic presentation of the status of Europe's contribution to ITER where he showed vivid images of the ITER site and from the production of key components. "Our work has advanced and we are now in the manufacturing phase for many components. We are committed to delivering  together with our industrial partners and the European fusion labs", he shared with the full auditorium where the audience was visibly drawn in by information on recent achievements such as the completion of the ITER bioshield, the switching on of the Neutral Beam test bed SPIDER and the development of the Cryoplant building.  Additionally, the F4E Director highlighted F4E's close work with the European Fusion Laboratories (EFLs), European industry and ITER partners in the successful completion of the manufacturing process of the Toroidal Field coil Winding Packs, the completed assembly of the Cryoplant and the accomplishment of the full-scale Divertor Cassette prototypes. "We appreciate the support from the fusion community and stand together in delivering ITER", he added.   

At the centre of the venue stood the SOFT exhibition that offered participants the possibility to interact and learn more about the R&D and industrial developments of the 30 entities that took part. Plenary and thematic session grouped high profile speakers who addressed a vast range of topics such as ITER, JT-60SA, IFMIF-DONES, the roadmap to fusion energy, JET and Wendelstein 7-X. As always, the poster sessions were buzzing with activity as younger and older generations of scientists proudly presenting the latest progress within their fields. 

F4E was present in all activities through a delegation of members of staff ready to take questions on F4E's work and the progress of ITER, communicate the latest calls for tender and give an overview of the Broader Approach activities. A new joint F4E/ITER stand, especially designed for the event, showcased the work being done for ITER and F4E's role in working together with European Fusion Laboratories and industry.  

Interest was high at the F4E stand at SOFT 2018.
Alfredo Portone, F4E Group Leader, during the poster session.

Capitalising on the presence of numerous European Fusion Laboratories and Industry Liaison Officers (ILOs), an Industry Day was organised in conjunction to SOFT. Gathering around 100 representatives from companies and laboratories interested in learning more about upcoming calls and potential possibilities of collaboration. Alfredo Portone gave a thorough overview of the current status of F4E's work. Benjamin Perier presented F4E's procurement procedures and gave an overview of upcoming business opportunities. Frederic Le Guern explained the F4E procurement strategy in the area of Diagnostics.    

SOFT 2018 gave a unique opportunity to combine interesting scientific topics with business offered. The next SOFT will take place in Dubrovnik, Croatia, in 2020. 

Benjamin Perier, F4E Market Intelligence Group, informed of upcoming business opportunities.