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EU Blocks UK From Work on Nuclear Fusion Tests Unless London Rejoins Euratom - Reports

© AP Photo / Michael ProbstSmoke rises from the nuclear power plant of Nerckarwestheim in Neckarwestheim, Germany, on Aug. 22, 2022.
Smoke rises from the nuclear power plant of Nerckarwestheim in Neckarwestheim, Germany, on Aug. 22, 2022.  - Sputnik International, 1920, 15.05.2024
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The European Union has rejected London’s attempts to continue collaboration on the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) project, as Brussels wants the United Kingdom to rejoin the bloc's Euratom research scheme, the Financial Times reported on Wednesday, citing people familiar with the matter.
The UK left the EU atomic agency when it quit the bloc, so London has applied to rejoin the world’s largest nuclear fusion experiment as an outsider, the newspaper reported.
"The UK participated in Iter as part of Euratom and it should do so on that basis if it wants to remain involved," an EU official was quoted by the Financial Times as saying.
All EU members have to be part of Euratom’s research and training programs to be involved in the EU's Fusion for Energy joint contribution program for ITER, the Financial Times reported. Australia, as a non-member state, was granted cooperation permission as it has an agreement with Euratom.
"International collaboration remains a key pillar of our strategy and we hope continued UKAEA [UK Atomic Energy Authority] collaboration with Iter partners can be agreed," the UK Department for Energy Security and Net Zero was quoted by the newspaper as saying.
ITER is currently being built in the south of France near the Cadarache technological research center through the joint efforts of the European Union, Russia, China, India, Japan, South Korea and the United States.
A Russian national flag and flags with the logo of Rosatom flutters at the construction site of a cooling tower at the Kursk II nuclear power plant near the village of Makarovka outside Kurchatov, Kursk region - Sputnik International, 1920, 10.05.2024
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This will be the first large-scale attempt to demonstrate the feasibility of using fusion to produce energy on an industrial scale. ITER is based on the use of a tokamak, a device that uses a strong magnetic field to confine plasma in the shape of a torus, a three-dimensional circle resembling a doughnut. If the ITER project is successful, humanity will have a virtually inexhaustible source of energy. The reactor is expected to start producing its first plasma in 2025.
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