Born in 1936, R. Aymar studied at the Ecole Polytechnique (Paris).Following his secondment to the CEA (French Atomic Energy Commission) in 1959, R. Aymar's career has been focused on fundamental research in plasma physics and its application in controlled thermonuclear fusion research.
In 1977, R. Aymar was appointed Head of the Tore Supra Project, a large facility dedicated to magnetic fusion research, to be built at Cadarache (France). He directed the Project from its conceptual design throughout its construction up to its operation in 1988 , when he became Head of Department of Fusion Research.
In 1990, R. Aymar was appointed Director of the Division of Fundamental Research in Natural Sciences of the CEA. In this position, he directed a wide range of basic research programmes, including astrophysics, particle and nuclear physics, condensed matter, paleo-climatology, as well as thermonuclear fusion. R. Aymar served on many Committees and Councils, either as Delegate from France or in his personal capacity.
In 1994, R. Aymar was appointed ITER Director by the ITER Council to direct the international research programme to prepare for the ITER construction. R. Aymar was appointed Director-General of CERN as of 1st January 2004 for a period of five years during which the large experiment (the LHC) was built and started to operate. From January 2009, R. Aymar is “Senior Scientific Advisor to the Administrateur Général (CEO) of the CEA”