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News & Media

Latest ITER Newsline

  • Making remote handling less remote

    Over a wet and windy three-day period on the ITER site in November, around 90 representatives of the ITER Organization, the Domestic Agencies of Europe and Japa [...]

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  • The framework for sharing ITER intellectual property

    In signing the ITER Agreement in 2006, the seven ITER Members were agreeing not only to share in the costs of constructing and operating the ITER facility, but [...]

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  • Wendelstein achieves ultra-precise magnetic topology

    A recent article in the online journal Nature Communications confirms that the complex topology of the magnetic field of Wendelstein 7-X—the world's largest ste [...]

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  • The Matrix, rigid and fluid

    A fast-growing array of structures and buildings has been emerging across the ITER worksite platform under the control and supervision of the European Domestic [...]

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  • By road, river and sea

    They travelled by road from the Air Liquide factory near Grenoble, sailed down the Rhône River from Lyon and entered the Mediterranean to the east of Fos-sur-Me [...]

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Of Interest

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A vision of the future

-Robert Arnoux

Anders Wallander and Thomas Casper: working on RDBS has provided strong linkage between CODAC engineers and Fusion Science and Technology (FST) physicists. (Click to view larger version...)
Anders Wallander and Thomas Casper: working on RDBS has provided strong linkage between CODAC engineers and Fusion Science and Technology (FST) physicists.
The year is sometime around 2030. The place - the ITER control room. All attention is focused on a large screen that displays graphs, figures, colours and a cutaway view of the vacuum vessel with a pulsing "D" shape at its centre.

A full Deuterium-Tritium plasma shot is underway. It is not the first one, but a DT shot is never routine. At one point, cheers and applause resound — the present shot is just perfect...all parameters nominal, the entire control system performing at its best.

Although this scene may belong to the future, the display screen can already be visualized thanks to a CODAC application that was recently developed by the ITER CODAC team and the DIII-D National Fusion Facility in San Diego. A precious tool, the Real-Time Plasma Boundary Display System (RBDS) allows the presentation of data simulating actual plasma shots, based on different scenarios.

To the lay viewer, the on-screen simulation looks like just another animation. In reality, obtaining this "quick display overview" takes a few days' execution time on the Livermore National Laboratory computer cluster.

"Visualization, even at this early stage of the project, is very important," says CODAC Section Leader Anders Wallander. "It provides indications about what data we'll need and when we'll need it. It also allows us to validate the technologies chosen for CODAC."

A precious tool for the ongoing work at ITER, the Real-Time Plasma Boundary Display System (RBDS) allows to present data generated from different scenarios simulating actual plasma shots. (Click to view larger version...)
A precious tool for the ongoing work at ITER, the Real-Time Plasma Boundary Display System (RBDS) allows to present data generated from different scenarios simulating actual plasma shots.
RBDS is part of the High Performance Networking (HPN) project that ITER partly contracted in 2009 to General Atomics, the private company that operates the DIII-D Tokamak. The project investigates and prototypes technologies for data transport architecture — a key issue in tokamak operation.
On the ITER side, working on RBDS has created strong ties between CODAC engineers and Fusion Science and Technology (FST) physicists — something Anders considers essential to the success of the project.

"There are several scientists in the Member countries doing plasma simulation" says Thomas Casper, the FST experimental physicist who participated in the project. "Soon, we'll make our visualization and data system available to them. It's part of the ITER philosophy: this huge project should drag in what was scattered until to now."


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