Research on this matter sees all the most technologically advanced countries involved in an international effort aimed at the construction of the experimental reactor ITER, whose purpose is to demonstrate that it is really possible to create energy on our planet with the same process occurring in the sun and other stars.
ITER construction, begun in 2007 at the Cadarache site, resulted in a strong acceleration of the path toward clean nuclear fusion energy, with the aim of obtaining a commercially available reactor. A huge step in this direction will be the construction of EU DEMO (DEMOnstration power plant), the first commercially sized fusion reactor.
Pending the ignition of the first plasma in the ITER tokamak, scheduled for 2025, the University of Rome Tor Vergata in partnership with EUROfusion and RBF Morph has decided to “anticipate the future”.
On the occasion of the International CAE Conference and Exhibition 2021, held in Vicenza from November 17TH to 19TH, a 3D-printed scale model of the EU DEMO tokamak reactor was exhibited for the first time.
“We decided to invest in a different, brighter future” – comments prof. M.E. Biancolini of the University of Rome Tor Vergata – “a future where, thanks to projects such as ITER, DTT and EU DEMO, it will be possible to think of nuclear fusion as a viable path towards independence from fossil fuels and the production of clean energy.”
“EU DEMO’s tokamak reactor represents a great challenge from a technical and technological point of view and it is clear that such a challenge can only be won if we pay the utmost attention, right from the design stage.” – says Corrado Groth, researcher at the University of Rome Tor Vergata – “the model created is the result of an optimization study on toroidal magnets that was presented at the CAE Conference.”
This study was enabled by means of an innovative approach based on mesh morphing. As Christian Bachmann, Head of Design Integration at EUROfusion says, “The magnetic coils of EU DEMO not only shape the plasma but the entire tokamak. The tools of RBF Morph best fit the coils to the various engineering and operational boundary conditions”
“The toroidal magnets are a fundamental component of the reactor” – adds Andrea Chiappa, design engineer at RBF Morph -“since they allow the confinement of plasma reaching a temperature of 150 million degrees Celsius. The model created allows you to see what the differences between the original geometry and that obtained through shape optimization are, and how this can influence the behaviour of the magnets that will have to keep the plasma away from the internal walls of the fusion reactor “.
About RBF Morph
RBF Morph is a pioneer of numerical mesh morphing solutions for CAE analysis and Digital Twins creation. Its goal is to provide companies and research institutions with a set of proven and reliable tools to quickly optimize each product’s shape, increasing mechanical and aerodynamic performances. RBF Morph is an ANSYS Official Technical Partner since 2009 and Official Research partner with the University of Rome “Tor Vergata”.
About University of Rome Tor Vergata
The University of Rome Tor Vergata was established in 1982: it is therefore a relatively young university. It was designed on the model of Anglo-Saxon campuses: it stretches on 600 hectares and hosts important research institutions, such as CNR and the Italian Space Agency – ASI. The mission of the University of Rome Tor Vergata is to contribute to people’s education and training, to scientific research and to the technological, organisational and social innovation needed to achieve a truly sustainable development in Italy, Europe and worldwide pursuant to the Sustainable Development Goals approved by the United Nations in September 2015.