An international activity
study of thermonuclear fusion is common to a number of countries throughout the world (link
to some major laboratories). In Europe, all research on controlled thermonuclear fusion is gathered together within
a common programme. The "Members" and "Associate" nations (such
as Switzerland and certain Eastern European countries) dedicate the whole of their research budget on controlled thermonuclear fusion to the European programme. This means that there is not
an independent research programme on controlled thermonuclear fusion in France (nor in the member states). Research on fusion is the most convincing example of
the benifits of a combined research effort in Europe.
Controlled thermonuclear fusion is one of the research activities of the
Framework Programme for Research, Technological development and Demonstration
) of the European community. This framework programme defines the major paths of research over four years (FP-RDT-Fusion
). The budget dedicated to controlled thermonuclear research by the European Union represents less than 6% of the
FP-RDP budget. It is worth recalling at this stage that we are talking here about the budget dedicated to all research carried out on this subject in Europe. This direct European finance represents around 40% of money dedicated to these studies, the rest being up to the member countries via research organisations involved in the programme.
The detailed definition of the work to be done, attribution and control of the proper running activities, are taken care of by committees where each country is represented. The work is sub-contracted to be carried out by qualified European research organisations called "Euratom Associations for fusion"
(in France, it is the CEA) or by European industry.
Assessment of the programme is carried out on behalf of the European Union by commissions external to the fusion programme (External
Advisory Group ,
Advisory Group/Fusion )
Figure 1 : organisation of research on controlled fusion
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