Concurrently with the accomplishment of the Intermediate Engineering Design report of IFMIF, the installation of the Linear IFMIF Prototype Accelerator has now started in Rokkasho, Japan.
IFMIF will be capable of providing >20 dpa/fpy (displacements per atom/full power year) with neutrons with a broad peak at 14 MeV allowing, within a few years of operation, the characterization of suitable materials for the first wall of the reactor vessel, together with the acquisition of data from fusion-relevant neutrons that will help material scientists unravel the underpinning physics.
The validation of the accelerator prototype, together with the success of other related constructed prototypes in Europe and Japan will support the start of construction of IFMIF at a future time.
In the future IFMIF plant, whose location has not yet been decided, two coupled accelerators will each deliver a deuteron (deuterium ion) beam of 125 mA at 40 MeV in continuous wave to a lithium loop.
Ten thousand kilometres from Rokkasho, at CEA Saclay in the Paris region, work on the scale 1:1 prototype accelerator, now officially named LIPAc (Linear IFMIF Prototype Accelerator), reached an important milestone.
During the EVEDA phase, only the low energy section, which is the most challenging one, will be tested: the beam energy will reach 9 MeV at the end of the first cryomodule, while in IFMIF three extra cryomodules will bring the energy to 40 MeV that is required to optimize the production of neutrons.
According to IFMIF Project Leader Pascal Garin, several prototypes are being developed, including an accelerator "whose characteristics are well beyond the present state of the art" and a lithium test loop "to check all thermo-hydraulic characteristics of this very innovative system.
The IFMIF team hopes that the process for deciding on a site to build IFMIF will be decided in the next few years and that a final IFMIF design report, i.
ITER and IFMLF should proceed in a coordinated way, with the realization of ITER starting in parallel with the detailed engineering design of IFMIF
, (3) Regarding the use of existing fusion devices, mostly devoted to plasma physics, in particular the use of the JET facilities, it is important not to interrupt abruptly their programmes as long as they can efficiently continue to contribute to improve the knowledge base needed for the next steps and develop the necessary experience in operating fusion machines.
The project IFMIF (International Fusion Materials Irradiation Facility) is part of the international activities of the broader approach to research on fusion energy.
To achieve these goals, a first phase called EVEDA (Engineering Validation Engineering Design Activity), aims to build a prototype accelerator scale of 1 to 9 Mev but only called Lipac (Linear IFMIF Prototype Accelerator).