About Technology Collaboration Programmes

The breadth and coverage of analytical expertise in the IEA Technology Collaboration Programmes (TCPs) are unique assets that underpin IEA efforts to support innovation for energy security, economic growth and environmental protection. The 38 TCPs operating today involve about 6 000 experts from government, industry and research organisations in more than 50 countries.

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Nuclear Fusion Technology Collaboration Programmes (TCPs)

Environment, Safety and Economic Aspects of Fusion Power (ESEFP) TCP

The ESEFP TCP conducts research, tests materials and develops analytical tools to advance the safety and cost-effectiveness of fusion. A revised socio-economic model for fusion power enables a valuable range of analyses such as comparing electricity extracted from fusion to wind, coal, natural gas, and nuclear fission.

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Fusion Materials TCP

Materials able to withstand extreme temperatures and neutron bombardment in the fusion chamber are a priority for fusion. The FM TCP develops materials for the first wall and blanket of the fusion chamber capable of operating under extreme temperatures and with a high flux of neutrons. Silicon carbide and silicon carbide composites are the focus of recent testing as they are among the few than can withstand extreme temperatures for long periods of time. 

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Nuclear Technology Fusion Reactors (NTFR) TCP

The NTFR TCP conducts research experiments on key components of fusion power plants, in particular those close to the fusion plasma. As tritium is a rare element, it will need to be recycled from the plasma for fusion to be economically viable. Activities under this TCP found that lithium pebbles offer an innovative, low-cost approach to recycling tritium.

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Plasma Wall Interaction TCP

The PWI TCP conducts research to understand the phenomena of interaction between the plasma and the chamber walls and to develop relevant wall materials for applications in fusion power. To reproduce the radiation levels expected with ITER, materials for plasma wall-facing components are being tested in linear plasma devices. 

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Reversed Field Pinches TCP

The RFP TCP shares instrumentation and carries out joint experiments to develop theories and models of the physics phenomenon of reversed-field pinches (RFP) and related technologies. Collaborative activities and a joint workshop with scientists researching the stellarator-heliotron concept of fusion reactors identified common research grounds such as three-dimensional (3D) computational tools.

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Spherical Tori TCP

The ST TCP supports co-operation among spherical torus research programmes and facilities worldwide in order to advance the scientific and technology knowledge of plasma confinement. A new, small, inexpensive device measures turbulence and the energy contained in the plasma across several devices in order to establish benchmarks and enable comparative analysis. 

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Stellarator-Heliotron Concept TCP

The SH TCP aims to advance applications of physics for fusion power, in particular magnetic fusion devices by developing the stellarator-heliotron concept of fusion reactors. A new world record of stable plasma for 48 minutes was attained in the Large Helical Device (Japan). Construction of the world's largest stellarator device, Wendelstein 7‑X (Germany), reached completion in 2014.

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Tokamak Programmes (CTP) TCP

The CTP TCP carries out collaborative research activities on tokamak fusion reactors and joint experiments to enhance scientific and technological understanding of these doughnut shaped devices for fusion power. Given the volatility of fusion plasma, identifying and testing systems to remedy plasma disruptions is crucial to advancing fusion power technology.

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