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Marina Becoulet from CEA to Keynote PASC18

Marina Becoulet, CEA

Today the PASC18 conference announced that Marina Becoulet from CEA will be one of its keynote speakers. The talk will be entitled: Challenges in the First Principles Modelling of Magneto Hydro Dynamic Instabilities and their Control in Magnetic Fusion Devices.

The main goal of the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) project is the demonstration of the feasibility of future clean energy sources based on nuclear fusion in magnetically confined plasma. In the era of ITER construction, fusion plasma theory and modeling provide not only a deep understanding of a specific phenomenon, but moreover, modeling-based design is critical for ensuring active plasma control.

The most computationally demanding aspect of the project is first principles fusion plasma modeling, which relies on fluid models – such as Magneto Hydro Dynamics (MHD) – or increasingly often on kinetic models. The challenge stems from the complexity of the 3D magnetic topology, the large difference in time scales from Alfvenic (10-7s) to confinement time (hundreds of s), the large difference in space scales from micro-instabilities (mm) to the machine size (few meters), and most importantly, from the strongly non-linear nature of plasma instabilities, which need to be avoided or controlled.

The current status of first principles non-linear modeling of MHD instabilities and active methods of their control in existing machines and ITER will be presented, focusing particularly on the strong synergy between experiment, fusion plasma theory, numerical modeling and computer science in guaranteeing the success of the ITER project.

Marina Becoulet is a Senior Research Physicist in the Institute of Research in Magnetic Fusion at the French Atomic Energy Commission (CEA/IRFM). She is also a Research Director and an International expert of CEA, specializing in theory and modeling of magnetic fusion plasmas, in particular non-linear MHD phenomena. After graduating from Moscow State University (Physics Department, Plasma Physics Division) in 1981, she obtained a PhD in Physics and Mathematics from the Institute of Applied Mathematics, Russian Academy of Science (1985). She worked at the Russian Academy of Science in Moscow, on the Joint European Torus in the UK, and since 1998 has been employed at CEA/IRFM, France.
Call for submissions reminder: deadlines are rapidly approaching!

PASC18 takes place July 2-4 in Basel, Switzerland.

In related news, the deadline for PASC18 papers submissions has been extended to Sunday, January 21, 2018.

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