L&T despatches cryostat lid for $20 billion global fusion project

Vessel’s function is to provide cooling to fusion reactor, keep very high temperatures under control

June 30, 2020 10:43 pm | Updated 11:10 pm IST - MUMBAI

The heavy engineering division of Larsen & Toubro Ltd (L&T) on Tuesday despatched a giant Cryostat lid, the most complex and final assembly of Cryostat, the largest stainless-steel, high-vacuum pressure chamber in the world, to International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) site in France from its Hazira unit in Gujarat.

“This is an important milestone in the global nuclear fusion arena as well as a moment of pride for the Make in India initiative,” the company said.

Bernard Bigot, Director-General, ITER organization said, “Today, in Hazira, we celebrate with you the completion of fabrication of all the segments of the Cryostat, including most recently the segments of the Cryostat Lid, again achieved under these challenging conditions.”

“The ITER Project and ITER-India were very fortunate to have L&T as our partner and the primary contractor for Cryostat fabrication…(as) the challenge of the Cryostat was unique,” he said.

S.N. Subrahmanyan, CEO & MD, L&T said, “This is a proud moment for the company, as it has completed another milestone in the development of world’s largest stainless-steel, high-vacuum pressure chamber.”

“The company has used innovative and digital manufacturing techniques to ensure uninterrupted supply of high-quality, high-precision assemblies to ITER,” he said.

“This will further pave a way for the installation of Cryostat at the project site in France and eventually lead to the demonstration of large-scale feasibility of fusion power. It has empowered India to tread towards Atma Nirbhar Bharat,” he added.

The Cryostat assembly referred as the Top Lid, weighing 650 MT (metric tons), will be installed with other Cryostat segments for ITER in a Reactor pit in southern France.

L&T has already delivered the base section, the lower cylinder and the upper cylinder for the Cryostat. The Cryostat’s function is to provide cooling to the fusion reactor and to keep very high temperatures at its core under control.

Anil V. Parab, executive vice-president and head, L&T Heavy Engineering, said “With the supply of the top lid, we have successfully completed our India scope of the project ahead of the schedule.”

This contract was bagged from ITER India, a wing of Department of Atomic Energy, for the mega scientific project, conducted in collaboration of seven countries including India and with a project outlay of around $20 billion.

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