The development of commercial fusion power production using deuterium and tritium has been ongoing worldwide for decades and the European version of DEMO will undergo conceptual design between 2021 and 2027. Among the different ways to provide electrical power, nuclear fusion will be publicly accepted if the environmental impact is at tolerable levels. The auxiliary power requirements of fusion power reactors will need to be optimized, and heat will need to be efficiently converted to electrical power through the usage of high-temperature steam. On the other hand, heat might need to be intermittently stored to account for pulsed plasma operation, on the expense of the temperature level available for steam generation. Tritium is highly mobile and its management as far as containment and confinement are concerned becomes more difficult with the increasing temperatures of the structural materials; any effluents and releases should be kept to an absolute minimum. Therefore, tritium containment and confinement equipment and procedures need to be well integrated into the design and into the operation of fusion power reactors.

This paper focuses on the topics of the main tritium technologies under development in the EU DEMO Breeding Blanket Program, covering especially tritium breeding and extraction technologies. In addition, the identification of the main tritium sources as far as permeation and escape into the environment are concerned and the main barriers for the mitigation of tritium release into the environment are introduced.