In this Issue:
Winning more ITER business
ITER project management contract awards
Fusion project information updates
Exhibitions and Events
Culham Technology and Innovation exhibition 2011 - NEW DATE
CCFE engagement with ITER and industry
Industry focus for Science Minister’s visit

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  Issue 24 - November 2010 Fusion Business


Winning more ITER business
UK industry has won over Euro 140M worth of contracts so far from construction of ITER. The UKTI sponsored, 'Business Opportunities for UK plc from Fusion and ITER' event at Culham at the end of September showed companies what's needed to win more business in the next procurement phase of the project. Presentations may be downloaded from

Delegates at the ITER event

Setting the scene

Prof Steve Cowley, CEO, Culham Centre for Fusion Energy (CCFE) set the scene for the 175 people representing over 100 companies who attended the event. “ITER is the culmination of over 50 years of fusion research, and will show that we can use plasma to produce 500 MW of power. We need industry's expertise to help us achieve this. UK Government is very interested in fusion and the ways in which our participation in ITER can assist in up-skilling the UK workforce.” The point was reiterated by Steve O'Leary, Director of International Services at UK Trade and Investment. “We are keen to work with UK companies to compete for large overseas projects as a means of enhancing the UK's industrial competitiveness,” he said.

Successful track record

UK companies have an established track record of successfully delivering to fusion research projects. The Joint European Torus (JET), currently the world's largest fusion experiment, and CCFE's  Mega Amp Spherical Tokamak (MAST) are testament to the quality of UK engineering. With this in mind, Derek Stork, Director of Technology, CCFE, presented the 'Big Picture'.

“Through CCFE's JET programme we have positioned ourselves to be central to ITER science and technology. Our aim is to develop and update UK capability in engineering technologies which will be of use beyond ITER in the DEMO-phase (DEMO will be a demonstration fusion power station) of the international fusion programme, by carrying out design, R&D and prototyping for ITER. The bottom line is that we want to equip UK industry with the know-how and skills to win ITER contracts in DEMO-relevant technologies,” explained Dr Stork. For further information see MAST Upgrade story in this issue of Fusion Business.

ITER – An engineering challenge for industry

Mario Merola, Head of Internal Components Division, ITER International organisation (IO), presented an overview of the engineering challenges facing the ITER team as they prepare for first plasma in November 2019. Key components to be procured by the end of March 2011 include superconducting coils, welded steel structures, high vacuum technologies and electrical power supplies. Engineering support services needed by the ITER Organisation include the main engineering disciplines as well as nuclear, hydraulic, optical, instrumentation and control, and microwave. Full details of the procurement opportunities can be found by downloading Mario Merola's presentation from

ITER-IO - Procurement process & current opportunities

Zoren Cikic, Senior Administrator for Contracts, ITER-IO, gave an update on the ITER-IO procurement process, together with details of forthcoming procurements. Details of these and practical tips for potential suppliers – essentially a list of 'dos and don'ts' when responding to an ITT, can be found by downloading Zoren Cikic's presentation.

One observation by Mr Cikic not included in the presentation is that companies are very good at responding to the technical and financial elements of their submission but often poor at completing the 'Admin' documents about the company.

Procurement process & current opportunities – more UK companies needed

Benjamin Perier, Head of Business Intelligence Group, F4E, reported the current status of F4E's industrial policy and its objectives. The policy's primary objectives are to ensure that F4E delivers as expected to ITER including risk mitigation and cost containment, and serve as a guide to achieving a cost-competitive European fusion industry.  

UK participation in the F4E Industry Portal is promising. Over 90 companies are registered with the Portal, placing it second behind France. F4E (and ITER) procurement agencies draw their potential suppliers from databases of Pre-Qualified Companies. Overall the UK is currently third in a ranking of contracts awarded so far, behind France and Italy.

Dan Mistry, Fusion and Industry Manager, CCFE, commented, “We want more UK companies to register, pre-qualify and bid so that we can increase our  ITER wins. If you are not already connected then you must register your organisation on immediately."

As F4E procurement ramps up, so the number of opportunities for UK companies looks set to increase. Details of forthcoming F4E tenders are contained in Benjamin Perier's presentation.

ITER Assembly – Engineering challenges

Robert Shaw, Section Leader for ITER Assembly and Installation, reported on the engineering challenges of the ITER vessel assembly. His Section is responsible for assembly of the ITER machine and for providing planning, oversight and installation of plant systems.  The biggest challenge is integration of ITER components supplied by different Domestic Agencies. The opportunities for industry include Vacuum Vessel Assembly, Engineering Support Contract, mock-ups and studies to validate critical procedures and many more. Download the presentation for details of these opportunities and tips on how to succeed in the IO procurement process.

UK plc’s experience with fusion/ITER

Three UK companies who have already been successful in winning ITER contracts shared their experiences. Babcock Nuclear, part of Babcock International Group plc, has won an ITER Central Engineering Framework contract, Atkins as part of the Engage consortium including French and Spanish companies won the F4E Architect Engineer contract, and Tessella Ltd is providing software support for ITER IO. Copies of their presentations can be downloaded here.

Many companies attending the ITER event also took the opportunity to meet buyers from ITER IO and F4E.

Summing up the 'Business Opportunities for UK plc from Fusion and ITER' event, Dan Mistry commented, “The ITER project faces significant engineering and project management challenges which could provide many business opportunities for UK companies. In recent months we have seen UK companies successfully winning contracts; but for those who have yet to win  please persevere. For those who have yet to register on the F4E and ITER databases, the F4E and ITER IO presentations have shown that this is a vital first step in engaging with ITER, therefore I would urge you to register as soon as possible as I do not want UK companies to miss these opportunities.”

Copies of all the 'Business Opportunities for UK plc from Fusion and ITER' can be found here.


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