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“JET has created a real fusion community”

On Wednesday 28 February hundreds of fusion experts gathered from across the world in Culham, UK, to celebrate four decades of scientific operations at the Joint European Torus (JET). Joining them was fusion expert Sara Moradi, who learned how to operate a tokamak at JET and has since become deputy leader of the EUROfusion Fusion Science Department. We asked her to collect as many photos and experiences as she could and share them here.

“We came together at UKAEA’s Cuham Campus to celebrate JET, but like UKAEA’s CEO Ian Chapman said: JET is more than just metal and concrete, it is a community of extraordinary people. Today we also celebrated how many people JET has brought together over the years to work as one team. Wherever they go, they stay part of the One JET team, like the European Commission’s Elena Righi who still keeps the lab notebooks from her JET period.”

“It was an honor to meet and hear from people like Michel Huguet and Paul-Henri Rebut from the original generation who designed JET, or Peter Lomas, without a doubt the most knowledgeable man about how to operate JET. And also to reconnect with the mentors, teachers, supporters and friends I’ve made here at JET!”

“The event was organised so well by UKAEA, hats off to them for putting this day together. We had one more chance to say goodbye to JET in the tokamak hall and take a group photo, but we also looked at a great exhibition about the facility.”

“The memory wall and the cloth where you could leave your signature were also a nice touch. And let’s not forget: excellent cake, and a chance to score JET mugs and t-shirts!”

“The talks were a pleasure to listen to and get an insight into the different eras of JET. Like Barry Green (lead engineer in the 1990s) showing some old photos from the early days when betting on JET results was still politically correct, or Damian King (current head of JET operations and NBI heating), describing JET in the 2020s with a cool lego set of the JET control room. Note the panda and the wizard ;)”

“JET is not only a place you work, or a top-tier laboratory, it’s also a place where you become friends for life with the people you work with day and night. For me it was great to meet up with Fernanda, Athina, Jörg, Tony, Damien, Morton and so, so many others. It was so much fun and so stimulating to work together.”

“During the facility tour it struck me that all these components and cabling have to be carefully and meticulously taken apart and removed. There is much work ahead of the decommissioning team and so much to learn still.”

“As I was taking these photos I was thinking how much care and work has been put into assembling all these installations. And how essential each has been in letting the scientists and engineers achieve breakthroughs and unravel the mysteries of fusion physics. It is such a huge collective effort and it has paid off. We now know a lot more on how to make fusion a success, which we never would have learned without JET.”

Photos courtesy of Sara Moradi, Deputy head of EUROfusion’s Fusion Science Department

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