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A multifrequency electron cyclotron resonance heating (ECRH) system is currently under construction at the ASDEX Upgrade tokamak experiment. The system employs depressed collector gyrotrons, step tunable in the range of 105-140 GHz, with a maximum output power of 1 MW and a pulse length of 10 s. One two-frequency GYCOM gyrotron has been in routine operation at ASDEX Upgrade since 2006. A further extension of the system with three more gyrotrons is underway. An in situ calibration scheme for the broadband torus window has been developed. The system is equipped with fast steerable mirrors for real-time MHD control. The gyrotron and the mirrors are fully integrated into the discharge control system. The ECRH system turned out to be essential for the operation of H-modes after covering the plasma facing components of ASDEX Upgrade with tungsten. Deposition of ECRH inside rhotor < 0.2 is necessary to prevent accumulation of W in plasmas with high pedestal temperatures. With respect to the limited loop voltage available in ITER, the use of ECRH for neutral-gas preionization to facilitate plasma breakdown and its application during the current ramp-up to increase the conductivity in order to save transformer flux have been demonstrated successfully for 105 GHz, 3.2 T (O1-mode) and 140 GHz, 2.2 T (X2-mode), corresponding to 170 GHz at ITER with the full and half values of its foreseen toroidal field of 5.3 T.