ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronEye IconIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailMenu BurgerPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon SearchSite TitleTitle ChevronIcon Twitter
Science

Multinational fusion reactor facing 5bn euro cost overrun

TOKYO -- Construction costs for a multinational experimental nuclear fusion reactor will likely exceed the estimate by 5 billion euros ($5.52 billion) to reach 20 billion euros, owing to rising labor expenses, the project's chief told The Nikkei.

The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor, or ITER, is being built in Cadarache in southern France by partners that include the U.S., Japan and Europe. The project aims to replicate a nuclear fusion process similar to that of the sun to create a new clean energy source.

Costs snowballed as assembling the reactor with parts contributed by project members proved more challenging than initially thought. As a result, the ITER decided to delay heating of the first plasma until 2025 and achieving full-power fusion until 2035.

Director-General Bernard Bigot said the organization consulted experts in deciding on the postponements and the new estimate, adding that he was confident about meeting the new deadlines. This marks the first time that construction costs have been drastically revised since 2010, when they grew by 9 billion euros to 15 billion euros.

The question going forward is whether member nations, such as the U.S. and Japan, can accept higher costs. Japan will likely see its contribution grow by 60 billion yen ($578 million). That will need to be worked out by Japan's education and finance ministries, among others.

The idea of the ITER was first hatched in a 1985 summit between U.S. President Ronald Reagan and Soviet Union General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev as a collaborative project to tap fusion energy for peaceful purposes.

(Nikkei)

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this monthThis is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia;
the most dynamic market in the world.

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia

Get trusted insights from experts within Asia itself.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Get Unlimited access

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this month

This is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia; the most
dynamic market in the world
.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Try 3 months for $9

Offer ends June 30th

Your trial period has expired

You need a subscription to...

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers and subscribe

Your full access to the Nikkei Asian Review has expired

You need a subscription to:

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers
NAR on print phone, device, and tablet media