§ 56. Mr. Palmer
asked the Prime Minister if he will make a statement on the decision to abandon the zero energy thermonuclear assembly project.
§ The Prime Minister
The Atomic Energy Authority inform me that the Zero Energy Thermonuclear Assembly project is not being abandoned. The machine known as ZETA was the first large device built by the Authority to provide information in the field of controlled thermonuclear reactions, and, as I said in my reply to the hon. Member for Barnsley (Mr. Mason) on 25th June, it will continue to be used for this purpose.
Experience with ZETA has shown that the next large device to be built in Britain should aim to provide a more thorough knowledge of the basic physical laws governing the thermonuclear process, taking account of the knowledge and experience already gained from ZETA and elsewhere.
An experimental device to meet these requirements, to be known as ICSE (intermediate current stability experiment) is at present being planned by the Atomic Energy Authority.