New England Wire Technologies helps US complete major magnet delivery for ITER

May 23, 2017

New England Wire Technologies in Lisbon, NH aided in the completion of a major milestone for US contributors to the ITER (International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor) project. New England Wire produced over 22,000 feet of finished Toroidal Field (TF) cable that will be part of the ITER toroidal field magnet system. As the only US company awarded the contract to produce the finished cable, New England Wire completed all deliveries for ITER in November of 2016.

ITER, an unprecedented international collaboration to demonstrate sustained burning plasma—a necessary step for fusion energy development—is now under construction in France. The facility will use over 60,000 miles of low-temperature, helium-cooled superconducting wire to generate the immense toroidal magnetic fields needed to confine 150 million degree Celsius plasma inside the ITER tokamak. Eighteen toroidal field magnets will encircle the inside walls of the ten story tall machine. In total, the toroidal field coils will weigh more than 6500 tons, and will have a total magnetic energy of 41 gigajoules and a maximum magnetic field of 11.8 tesla.  ITER is an extraordinary scientific partnership of 35 nations–including the United States, China, European Union, India, Japan, Korea, and Russia–to demonstrate the scientific and technological feasibility of fusion energy which offers the potential for clean, abundant, safe energy.

US ITER, managed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oak Ridge, Tenn. is responsible for 8% of the toroidal field coil conductor required; the rest of the conductor will be supplied by other ITER member nations.

In 2011, New England Wire Technologies was awarded the cable contract from the US Department of Energy.  At the height of fabrication, New England Wire Technologies was cabling over 30,000,000 feet of conductor at their facilities in Lisbon and Littleton, New Hampshire.  These final TF cables were shipped to an external casing, or jacketing, facility and the final conductor was then delivered to the ASG in LaSpezia, Italy, for winding.

As a partner in ITER, the US is providing hardware for multiple ITER systems. The US project will complete its next system contribution, components for the steady-state electrical network, later in 2017. Deliveries of toroidal field conductor from the US began in 2015.  To learn more about the ITER project and NEWT’s participation, click here.

 Michael Boivin, Director of Engineering, and Craig Simpson, Director of Global Strategic Planning and Business Development, accept certificates of recognition from Mark Uhran of the US ITER Project Office in Oak Ridge, TN, for NEWT’s participation in the ITER project.

Left: A drawing of single toroidal field coil shows the scale of the ITER tokamak. Right: The finished conductor with final casing. Source: US ITER

The conductor produced for ITER. Photo: New England Wire Technologies