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ITER: The three Air Liquide Cold Boxes are installed on the Cryogenic Plant!

iter coldboxes
© ITER Organization

ITER's three cold boxes, designed in the workshops of Sassenage, have reached their final destination at the cryogenic plant on ITER’s construction site.

The three helium refrigeration units, which arrived on ITER's construction site in Saint-Paul-lez-Durance in December 2016, were transferred from their storage site to their final location in the cryogenic plant. They are among the first pieces of process equipment to be installed on ITER's site.

It was on Friday June 23 that the third and final cold box was installed in the building, under the supervision of Air Liquide's teams. This performance was watched by the Director General of ITER Organization, Bernard Bigot, along with representatives from each of the program's member countries. Bernard Bigot warmly congratulated Air Liquide advanced Technologies' team for their hard work, their professionalism and their commitment.

It was only after a long journey – 500 km by road, river and sea from the Sassenage workshop – that the cold boxes arrived on the ITER site. Thanks to a cryogenic process, they will produce liquid helium that will be used to cool the 10,000 tons of superconductive magnets as well as the tokamak's heat screens. A few weeks before the arrival of the three cold boxes, two helium storage tanks were also delivered to ITER's site. This storage capacity will enable the evacuation of liquid helium from the tokamak in the event of accidental vaporization. On June 1, the helium gas storage tanks supplied by Air Liquide Engineering & Construction were also delivered.

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Soon, two nitrogen refrigeration units and two 80K helium refrigeration cold boxes supplied by Air Liquide Engineering and Construction should be delivered to the ITER site from China.