This week, 5-7 October, the ITER Organization hosted its first topical group meeting within the International Tokamak Physics Activity (ITPA
) since the ITPA began operating under the auspices of ITER in February 2008. The Transport and Confinement Topical Group investigates various properties of the core plasma such as particle and energy transport, plasma rotation and evolution of the plasma current. As with the other six topical groups, it identifies opportunities for joint collaboration between experimental programs, theorists and modelling groups; this collaboration is then executed through various international agreements under the International Energy Agency (IEA).
''It is hard to retire when your brain is still working!'' said Ksenia Razumova and Yury Dnestrovskiy from the Kurchatov Institute in Moscow, both in their eighties and still devoted to the complex behaviour of fusion plasmas.
Discussion of physics issues at this meeting focused on validation of transport models during the ramp-up of the plasma current and transport properties in the core (plasma edge transition regime, three-dimensional effects of magnetic perturbations, and impurity transport). Most of the meeting, however, was devoted to reviewing progress on joint experiments and collaborations carried out during the past year, and to proposals for new and continuing proposals for next year. These will be reviewed by the ITPA Coordinating Committee in a joint meeting with representatives of the Cooperation on Tokamak Programs