Congratulations Sam!

Congratulations to Sam Ward, a York Fusion CDT student who successfully defended his thesis at viva in May 2022. Sam’s thesis is entitled, “Optimising energetic particle transport due to 3D fields in the ITER tokamak” and his supervisors are Roddy Vann (University of York), Rob Akers (CCFE) and Simon Pinches (ITER).

What’s next for Sam?…..  “I’m continuing my fusion research, albeit at a slightly different angle, as a postdoctoral researcher at TU/e. My research is focussed on asking: how and where can we increase the value of fusion energy? This involves exploring the interaction of technology, innovation and energy systems to develop real strategies for bringing fusion closer”.

An abstract from Sam’s thesis is below:

The ITER tokamak relies on an ELM-control coil (ECC) system to achieve its goal of high fusion gain plasma discharges. However, the magnetic fields created by these coils can lead to significant transport of fast ions and subsequent power loads on plasma-facing components. Nevertheless, studying this system is extremely challenging for today’s conventional tokamaks and the older physics codes currently used to study them.

This PhD project applied the novel, high-performance GPU code LOCUST to study fast-ion dynamics in ECC fields in ITER. As a result, clear strategies for operating the ECC system have been found. These strategies, such as rotating the field or optimising the ECC settings, maximise the heating efficiency of the fast ions whilst minimising power loads on the components, at the same time as maintaining a high-performance plasma so that ITER can achieve its design goals”.

Well done Sam!