RACE’s latest animation shows the 4th IA in the IRTF programme – the VVPSS prototype remote maintenance strategy. VVPSS, the Vacuum Vessel Pressure Suppression System, allows operators to open a vacuum flange on a pipe, whilst maintaining containment.
Two prototype tools, a Flange Bolting Tool and Containment Tool, have been designed by RACE engineers. At ITER, the tools would operate in confined spaces, so to replicate the constraints, a mock-up environment has also been built. The VVPSS will be key to maintaining the pipework at ITER.