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Nuclear fusion is believed to be an effective option as a future energy source, and efforts are underway to develop nuclear fusion reactors in various countries and through international cooperation. In addition, accelerators that generate high-energy charged particles are driving the development of advanced science such as particle and nuclear physics.
Hitachi has been contributing to the development of advanced science and its implementation in society through the development of equipment by making use of cutting-edge ultra-high-voltage, ultra-high vacuum, cryogenic and superconducting technologies alongside with electromagnetic technology.
ITER is being constructed in France with the participation of 35 countries including seven ITER members, in order to demonstrate the scientific and technological feasibility of nuclear fusion energy, which is expected to offer a fundamental solution to the world's energy and environmental issues. Hitachi has been contributing to ITER projects, including manufacture of key equipment for the 1 MV extra-high-voltage power supply testing facility being constructed in Italy ahead of the heating and current driving neutral beam injector (NBI) for ITER.
Power Supply System of the NBI for ITER
(Figure courtesy of National Institutes for Quantum Science and Technology)
Neutral beam testing facility (NBTF) under construction in Italy
Top: Near the DC filter
Bottom: 1 MV insulating transformer
The LHD is a device designed to confine nuclear fusion plasma in distinctive superconducting helical coils, and is based on a unique Japanese idea. Hitachi took part in construction as overall assembly manufacturer, and since the facility began operation in 1998, has also implemented additional construction including coil sub-cooling systems and internal vacuum vessel equipment. Going forward, Hitachi will continue to support test operation by providing stable operational maintenance and equipment improvements to increase performance.
Assembly of ultra-low temperature components of the LHD
Inside of the plasma vacuum vessel
(Photos courtesy of National Institute for Fusion Science)
Accelerators are devices that accelerate charged particles such as electrons and ions to high speeds, and come in various types, from high-energy accelerators used to explore the origins of the universe and matter to high-intensity bean accelerators that utilize secondary particles from a target, and storage rings that use synchrotron radiation for materials research. Hitachi takes part in the planning of research organizations in Japan and overseas, and has delivered a wide range of equipment including large electromagnets, precision high-frequency accelerating tubes, components for future superconducting accelerators and so on. Through these endeavors, we contribute to the development of basic science and also work on medical and industrial applications.
Electromagnets of the J-PARC accelerator
(Circumference: 1,567 m)
Bending magnets for the SuperKEKB accelerator (total length of 4 meters)
Cryostat for superconducting accelerating cavity aimed at International Linear Collider (ILC) development
Superconducting technologies are one of the keys to achieving improved performance in components used in nuclear fusion and accelerators. With the use of superconductivity, high magnetic field performance not possible with normal conduction can be achieved. Hitachi manufactures various superconducting magnets for research organizations based in Japan and overseas. We have also developed conduction-cooled superconducting magnets that employ high-temperature superconducting materials (MgB2), contributing to energy savings in addition to improved performance.
Superconducting magnet for beam separation (total length: 7 m) for the HL-LHC accelerator of the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN).
Superconducting solenoid magnet for muon transport delivered to J-PARC (total length of 6 meters)
Conduction-cooled high-temperature superconducting (MgB2) magnets for high-frequency equipment