Recent progress in research on tungsten materials for nuclear fusion applications in Europe
The current magnetic confinement nuclear fusion power reactor concepts going beyond ITER are based on assumptions about the availability of materials with extreme mechanical, heat, and neutron load capacity. In Europe, the development of such structural and armour materials together with the necessary production, machining, and fabrication technologies is pursued within the EFDA long-term fusion materials programme. This paper reviews the progress of work within the programme in the area of tungsten and tungsten alloys. Results, conclusions, and future projections are summarized for each of the programme's main subtopics, which are: (1) fabrication, (2) structural W materials, (3) W armour materials, and (4) materials science and modelling. It gives a detailed overview of the latest results on materials research, fabrication processes, joining options, high heat flux testing, plasticity studies, modelling, and validation experiments. (C) 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.