On 5th February 2007 the “Broader Approach Agreement” (English version/ Japanese version(the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan)) was signed by Europe and Japan. This established the basis for the collaboration on building JT-60SA.
There were initial concerns about using the Conceptual Design Report (CDR) of JT-60SA as the basis for functional specifications of the hardware to be procured, due to the potential for cost overruns in some components. Furthermore there were concerns that the way of working envisaged by the Broader Approach Agreement would not be able to optimally use the expertise available. These concerns led to the creation of an Integrated Project Team (IPT) , and the decision to re-baseline the design within the cost targets agreed in 2006. The Integrated Design Report (IDR), including revised costs and schedule, was produced by the end of 2008.
Following the build up of the IPT staff and the infrastructure needed for a distributed project team to work efficiently, detailed design of components and their interfaces were resolved and procurement specifications written. This was followed by the placing and following up of procurement arrangements and subsequent contracts for procurement. Following disassembly of JT-60U, assembly of components began in the torus hall in January 2013, with the cryostat base manufactured in Spain.
Delays in procurement funding for the European contributors, and the highly disruptive Tohoku earthquake in 2011 in Japan have caused some delay compared to the original schedule foreseen in 2008, but by March 2020 all components provided by Japan and Europe had been assembled, and the experiment began its commissioning, first testing individual systems and then beginning integrated commissioning, in preparation for first plasma in 2021.
A more detailed record of achievements and the current status can be found under “News”.