Tore Supra

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Coordinates: 43°42′13″N 5°45′54″E / 43.703626°N 5.764968°E / 43.703626; 5.764968

Tore Supra
Type Tokamak
Operation date 1988–
Major radius 2.25 m
Minor Radius 0.70 m
Magnetic field 4.5 T (toroidal)
Heating 20 MW
Location Cadarache, France

Tore Supra is a French tokamak that began operating after the discontinuation of TFR (Tokamak of Fontenay-aux-Roses) and of Petula (in Grenoble). Its name comes from the words torus and superconductor, as Tore Supra was for a long time the only tokamak of this size with superconducting toroidal magnets, allowing the creation of a strong permanent toroidal magnetic field.

Tore Supra is situated at the nuclear research center of Cadarache, Bouches-du-Rhône in Provence, one of the sites of the Commissariat à l'Énergie Atomique. It started operation in 1988. It has a goal of creating long-duration plasma;

It now holds the record of the longest plasma duration time for a tokamak (6 minutes 30 seconds[1] and over 1000 MJ of energy injected and extracted in 2003), and it allows to test critical parts of equipment such as plasma facing wall components or superconducting magnets that will be used in its successor, ITER.

Device parameters[edit]

As of 1988:

2006 parameters essentially the same [2] also:

  • Weight of NbTi superconductor : ~45 tonnes
  • Maximum magnetic field on the conductor : 9.0 T
  • Total magnetic energy : 600 MJ
  • Weight of magnetic circuit : 830 tonnes

Operation 1988-2010[edit]

By 1998 it had produced over 20,000 plasma shots of up to 2 minutes duration.[3]

Between 2000 and 2002 the vacuum chamber was completely renewed/relined.[4] increasing the power extraction by active cooling to 25 MW (to allow longer plasma duration).[5]

In Dec 2003 it achieved a record 6.5 minute plasma[1] This was plasma shot #32299, Lower hybrid power ~2.9 MW, total injected energy ~1.1 GJ, plasma current ~500 kA, nl ~ 2.6x1019/m2.[3]


Beginning in March 2013[6] Tore Supra underwent an extensive refit, including new poloidal coils a new cooling system and all-metal cladding, mainly for experiments on tungsten divertor technology for ITER.[7] The reactor was renamed WEST, for "Tungsten (chemical symbol "W") Environment in Steady-state Tokamak".[8] WEST achieved first plasma in december 2016.[9]


External links[edit]