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MOSCOW, December 22. /TASS/. Only Russia and China fulfil their obligations within the ITER project in due time, deputy director of Russia’s state-run nuclear corporation, Rosatom, Vyacheslav Pershukov said on Monday.
ITER is an international project to design and build an experimental fusion reactor. The thermonuclear reactor is under construction in the French city of Cadarache. The ITER project involves the European Union, India, the Republic of Korea, Russia, the United States and Japan. It is seen as a potential inexhaustible source of ecologically clean energy.
Russia’s investment in the ITER project would reach nearly 8 billion rubles by 2016. In 2014, Russia’s industrial contribution stood at 5 billion rubles.
The costs of building an international experimental reactor will keep growing, as the launch has been repeatedly postponed. At this point, the project’s costs stand at €15 billion, whereas the original estimate was €10 billion. Experts believe that another considerable delay may push up the costs by another 40%.
Controlled thermonuclear fusion is to imitate processes underway on the Sun, resulting in the release of immense amounts of energy. Some experts hope thermonuclear fusion plants might become one of the most promising sources of energy in the near future.
The original plan was to stage the first experiment to generate plasma in 2018. Then the launch date had to be postponed till 2020. The year 2027 was set as the date for getting stable burning plasma. In October there were reports the reactor’s launch may be delayed by another two or three years.