MOSCOW, July 25. /TASS/. Iran may join the international project for the creation of the ITER reactor (International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor), which is being built in the French town of Cadarache, head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran Ali Akbar Salehi is quoted by the IRNA agency on Monday.
"ITER has 27 members comprising European Union countries, the US, Russia, China, India, South Korea and Japan and during recent visit the grounds were prepared for Iran to join the plan," he said.
The Islamic Republic of Iran is the only country in west Asia to be admitted in the project and all parties with good knowledge on capabilities of the Iranian experts are to welcome it, Salehi said, according to IRNA.
According to Salehi, some days ago, six ITER experts from France visited Iran and are exchanging views with the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran to make preparatory works for Iranian experts to join ITER.
"Obstacles preventing Iran to join ITER have been removed and the country will officially join the group," Salehi said.
The ITER project began in 2007, with the treaty signed by its international members came into force. Its approach to fusion is to trap heavy isotopes of hydrogen in a doughnut-shaped vacuum vessel known as a tokamak and heat them up to 150 million °C. This should force their nuclei to fuse into helium, releasing vast amounts of energy. Tokamaks have existed around the world for decades, but ITER would be the first to release substantially more energy than was put into the hydrogen plasma. It is predicted to produce about 500 megawatts of electricity.