Teaching at the UPC’s fusion MSc course

As in its previous editions, our Fusion Group is contributing several lectures to the fusion course imparted within the Nuclear Engineering MSc at UPC. The course gives an overview of plasma physics and fusion technology, presenting a broad scope of topics. The topics are taught by experts in each of the fusion fields covered, with external lecturers mainly provided by Fusion for Energy (F4E) and our Fusion Group at BSC.

This year, our Fusion Group managed to double the number of lectures we could offer thanks to our enhanced expertise arising from our various projects including EUROfusion, FusionCAT and FUSION CODES II. Our lectures delve in the computational modelling of fusion materials at the atomic scale, superconducting magnets, plasma heating and simulation codes in fusion technology. As last year, all our lectures are given remotely due to Covid restrictions. In the following a brief summary is given for each lecture:

  • On the 7th April, Dani Gallart covered plasma heating with a lecture entitled “Plasma heating with RF waves”. The basics of radiofrequency (RF) waves propagation in a plasma and the fundamental operation of antennas in tokamaks were reviewed. Moreover, a brief explanation of the effects of RF waves in plasmas were assessed with recent research results conducted at the JET tokamak.
  • On the 21st April, José Lorenzo contributed with a lecture on “Superconducting Magnets for Fusion”. He presented an overview of the main magnet systems in a tokamak reactor and the most relevant topics in the design, analysis and manufacturing of superconducting magnets. These covered an introduction to superconductivity, electromagnetic field calculations, mechanical analysis of DEMO structures, and manufacturing of ITER magnets. Special emphasis was put on conductor stability and quench propagation modelling.
  • On the 5th May, Julio Gutiérrez gave his lecture on “Computational Modelling of Fusion Materials at the Atomic Scale”. In this presentation, the essential foundations of atomistic modelling from quantum mechanical and classical approaches were introduced. Moreover, some practical examples of using atomistic simulation methods for the study of metals under irradiation were presented.
  • On the 26th May, Xavier Sáez will give a lecture entitled “Simulation codes in Fusion Technology”. This presentation will be focused on the role of High-Performance Computing in fusion research and will include some examples of fusion simulation codes used currently.

These lectures give a flavour of the research carried out by members of the Fusion Group while also teaching the fundamentals in the respective fields. We believe it is a good approach for a Masters degree where the rest of the courses are focused in fission technologies. In any case, it was this fusion course that pushed me towards research in fusion technology when I myself took this Masters 7 years ago.

We hope to continue our participation in this course for the years to come!

The FusionCAT project with reference number 001-P-001722 has been co-financed by the European Union Regional Development Fund within the framework of the ERDF Operational Program of Catalonia 2014-2020, with the support of Generalitat of Catalonia.

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