The objective of the ITER (« way » in latine) project is to go through the steps still necessary to enable the construction of a prototype producing electricity through nuclear fusion in the years 2050's.
Started in 1958, the fusion activity in France has been boosted with the construction and the operation of the Tore-Supra tokamak, built in Cadarache between 1983 and 1988. It has been the first large tokamak in the world using superconducting magnets.
In the 1980's, all the fusion activities of CEA have been grouped together in Cadarache, with the goal to host the tokamak which would succeed to the existing tokamaks.
ITER will be built on the CEA site of Cadarache.
Within DSM, the activities are managed between the department of research on controlled fusion (DRFC/Step), the department of fundamental research on condensed matter (DRFMC/SBT) and Dapnia. These activites are made within working groups, which prepare and answer EFDA (European Fusion Development Agreement) call for tenders. Dapnia is involved in several working groups: magnets, cryogenics ans instrumentation. This structure of working groups in under evolution because of the setting of the finale structure for ITER and of the emergence of new projects (JT60, IFMIF-EVEDA) in the frame of the broader approach for ITER.
More specifically, DAPNIA has been responsible for two tasks: a winding mock-up using an innovative resin and the characterization of high temperature superconductors for the DEMO project (next step after ITER).