Plasma Scenario Developer

Location: Milton Park, Oxfordshire, UK
Salary: Competitive

Background

Tokamak Energy is a privately funded company with a mission to deliver a faster route to fusion power. Founded in 2009, Tokamak Energy is developing efficient and compact fusion reactors by based on two emerging technologies: spherical tokamaks (STs) and magnets made from high temperature superconductors (HTS).

The company is currently developing two main areas in parallel – research into high field spherical tokamak physics and engineering on our latest device, ST40; and a HTS magnet development programme that will culminate in the demonstration of a high field tokamak magnet system. Following successful completion of these project, the technologies development and understanding gained will be combined to deliver the world’s first fully functioning fusion reactor targeting fusion energy gain and industrial scale power production – ST-F1.

Person and Job Specification

The Role:

Spherical tokamaks (STs) have several beneficial features that make them an attractive option for commercial power production. The compressed shape of STs allows them to simultaneously operate with high self-driven bootstrap current fractions and high betas, the ratio of plasma to magnetic pressure. These features reduce the recirculating power and the required magnetic volume, both of which significantly improve the economics of fusion power. There is also strong evidence that energy confinement is STs has a stronger favourable dependence on toroidal field that observed at conventional aspect ratio. This improved confinement may allow high field ST power plants to be made even more compact.

Tokamak Energy are looking for a plasma physicist to develop and optimise operating scenarios that take full advantage of the favourable properties of high field STs. This role will include: optimising scenarios to improve performance, modelling fully non-inductive scenarios with high bootstrap fractions; modeling the core and edge plasma regions; developing plasma current start-up and ramp-up schemes that are compatible with HTS tokamaks; optimising for improved stability and high performance; and developing predominately RF heated regimes. The role will include modelling for both current and future devices. The successful candidate will also work closely with Tokamak Energy’s collaborators to understand and incorporate results from relevant experiments.

Duties will include

  • Responsible for Tokamak Energy’s in-house scenario development capabilities
  • Scenario modelling to optimise performance of Tokamak Energy’s current machine, ST40
  • Part of the concept design team for the world’s first HTS high field spherical tokamak, ST-F1

Contacts and communication

  • Reports to the Physics Team Leader
  • Communicating results and their implications to the wider team

Skills and experience

  • PhD in plasma physics or fusion related field, or equivalent experience
  • Several years’ experience modelling tokamak plasmas using transport/equilibrium/stability codes
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively in a multi-disciplinary team of scientist and engineers
  • Organised approach to overcoming complex challenges

Benefits:

  • 25 Days Holiday (plus bank holidays)
  • Company Pension scheme: Company contribution of 5% of salary after 3 months’ service
  • Eligible for company share option scheme after one years’ service
  • Company bonus scheme, discretionary, dependent on performance
  • Private medical insurance after 3 months service

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