Dzień: 9 lipca 2015

OF INTEREST: Overcoming the "mysterious barrier"

​Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) have developed a detailed model of the source of a puzzling limitation on fusion reactions. The findings, published in June in Physics of Plasmas, complete and confirm previous PPPL research and could lead to steps to overcome the barrier if the model proves consistent with experimental data. ‚We used to have correlation,’ said physicist David Gates, first author of the paper. ‚Now we believe we have causation.’ This work was supported by the DOE Office of Science. At issue is a problem known as the ‚density limit’ that keeps donut-shaped fusion facilities called tokamaks from operating at peak efficiency. This limit occurs when the superhot, charged plasma gas that fuels fusion reactions reaches a certain density and spirals apart in a flash of light, shutting down the reaction. Overcoming the limit could facilitate the development of fusion as a safe, clean and abundant source of energy for generating electricity. Read the full article on the PPPL website. Image: Magnetic island geometry showing the asymmetry effect that is crucial in determining the mechanism for the density limit. Reprinted with permission from Phys. Plasmas 22, 022514 (2015). Copyright 2015 AIP Publishing LLC.   Czytaj dalej...

OF INTEREST: FuseCOM team meets in Finland

​In June, a group of Communications Officers from fusion laboratories across Europe met in Finland for two days of exchange. Representing the 29 research organizations and universities from 26 European countries plus Switzerland, the communicators from FuseCOM met for the first time on behalf of the newly built EUROfusion consortium to discuss European fusion communication.   EUROfusion, the European Consortium for the Development of Fusion Energy, manages and funds European fusion research activities on behalf of Euratom, in accordance with the Roadmap to the realisation of fusion energy, which outlines the most efficient way to realize fusion electricity by 2050. It is the result of an analysis of the European Fusion Programme undertaken in 2012 by the Research laboratories within EUROfusion’s predecessor agreement, the European Fusion Development Agreement, EFDA.   The FuseCOM members met in Finland, where they were hosted by Finland’s Research Unit VTT. Through presentations and working groups, participants shared news from the research units across Europe, practical examples of communication work, and strategies for the future. Meeting organizer and head of EUROfusion’s Communications Office, Petra Nieckchen, commented: ‚We have established a trusting network that is the very basis needed to reach our long-term goal: creating, with the network, a coherent European voice for fusion.’   Learn more about FuseCOM here. Czytaj dalej...

OF INTEREST: "Festival de Théorie" begins in Aix-en-Provence, France

The 8th edition of the Festival de Théorie opens on Monday 6 July in Aix-en-Provence, France. Held every two years, the Festival organizes theory working groups on well-focused subjects in magnetized plasma physics and aims to foster interdisciplinary links between magnetic fusion, astrophysics, plasma physics and related fields. The international meetings usually bring together 25 to 35 experts and about 80 younger researchers, including PhD students and post-docs. The Director Committee for this year’s edition is chaired by ITER Organization Director-General Bernard Bigot. The scientific committee is chaired by Prof. P.H. Diamond (UCSD and NFRI) and co-chaired by Dr. X. Garbet (CEA). The 2015 Festival de Théorie will run from 6 to 24 July 2015. The main topic is "Pathways to Relaxation." This includes — but is not limited to — reconnection events such as solar flares and general impulsive relaxation in astrophysics, sawteeth, Edge Localized Modes and edge relaxation phenomena in confined plasmas, Taylor relaxation, Potential Vorticity mixing dynamics and homogenization in fluids, and general aspects of constrained relaxation. More information at the conference website.   Czytaj dalej...

EVENT: Electrical Supply Contract Day

The ITER Organization cordially invites interested Electrical Energy Suppliers and Balance Responsibility Entities („Gestion d’Equilibre”) to participate at the ITER Headquarters in this Infoday aimed at presenting the scope for the Electricity Supply Contract to the ITER site.For those unable to attend personally, the event will be broadcasted via live-stream. Czytaj dalej...

NEWSLINE: R.J. Smits: "Fusion is at the core of Europe’s long-term energy strategy"

Interview with Robert-Jan Smits, Director-General for Research and Innovation within the European Commission and former Head of the European Delegation to the ITER Council. Mr. Smits, during last month’s sixteenth ITER Council, you officially announced that starting 1 July, the ITER Project will no longer be under the responsibility of the European Commission Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, led by you, but will move to the Directorate-General for Energy, led by Director Dominique Ristori. Can you explain the reasons behind this change?   ITER is a fascinating project, a complex project, a project for mankind. This is the only large-scale global project in which seven key partners from across the globe work together. There is not a single other field where we have this situation. So, from that point of view, ITER is unique. And it is also contributing to the enormous challenge we face to provide energy to our citizens and at the same time to decarbonize the economy.   And that is the reasoning behind the transfer of ITER from Research to Energy within the European Commission. It allows us to position fusion at the core of our long-term energy strategy. As you know, the European Commission has presented its plan for an Energy Union, which aims to increase energy security within Europe and at the same time contribute to global climate goals. In that context, ITER is now playing a key role. The transfer of the responsibility inside the European Commission symbolizes that we no longer see ITER as just a big science project.   Will this transfer change anything regarding the European participation in the project?   No, we have a first-class representative, Dominique Ristori, who knows the energy field inside and out, having worked more or Czytaj dalej...

NEWSLINE: A walk-through ASDEX Upgrade

In this new interactive animation produced by the Max Planck Institute of Plasma Physics in Germany, you’re invited to take a virtual tour through the ASDEX Upgrade fusion device accompanied by doctoral students in plasma physics and engineering.   Whether you choose to enter the vacuum vessel or the control room, or you prefer a close-up explanation of the heating or diagnostic systems, you’ll be accompanied in your visit by short, clear explanations in German or English.   Since 1991, ASDEX Upgrade has operated as a midsize experiment whose essential plasma properties—particularly plasma density, plasma pressure, and wall load—have been adapted to the conditions that will be present in future fusion power plants.   With a power-plant-like geometry, a tungsten-clad vessel wall, and powerful and flexible plasma heating, ASDEX Upgrade contributes to the preparation of ITER and the next-step machine, DEMO, through studies focused on plasma-wall interactions and plasma stability.   Learn more about ASDEX Upgrade and take the virtual tour here. Czytaj dalej...

NEWSLINE: In Russia, last toroidal field conductor jacketed

On 19 June 2015 specialists of the Cable Institute (JSC VNIIKP) jacketed and compacted the last production length of Russian toroidal field conductor at Institute of High Energy Physics (IHEP) jacketing line in Protvino.   The milestone marked the end of a five-year campaign to manufacture 28 production lengths, amounting to more than 120 tons of material. The sophisticated, multi-stage process involves strand production, cabling, jacketing and compaction. Conductor quality and the stability of parameters have been verified repeatedly through the testing of full-size samples at the SULTAN facility (EPFL, Switzerland) and by ITER Organization experts.   Fabrication of the Russian toroidal field conductor began in 2011. Many leading industries and research centres have been involved, including the Bochvar Institute, JSC TVEL, JSC ChMP, JSC VNIIKP, SRC IHEP, and the Kurchatov Institute. To meet the challenging task, a superconducting strand production line was created from the ground up at the Chepetsk Mechanical Plant (Glazov, Udmurtia); cabling equipment was installed at the Podolsk branch of VNIIKP; jacketing and compaction took place at IHEP; and final leak testing was performed at a facility of the Kurchatov Institute in Moscow.   The fabrication of the final toroidal field conductor length symbolizes the fulfilment of requirements by Russian industry, within the commitment made by Russia to the ITER Project.   After a series of tests, the conductor will be delivered to Italy for fabrication of ITER’s toroidal field magnet coils. By year end, all toroidal field conductor production lengths currently stored at Russian facilities will have been shipped to Europe. Czytaj dalej...