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Valentin Aslanyan's blog

An ending and a beginning

After many months of work, I managed finally to hand in, defend and correct my PhD thesis. Writing up was a tough slog and I’ve given up counting the number of commas I’ve had to put in or take out of the final work. After finishing the write-up in February, I made one final trip to Colorado to get everything ready for the next PhD students and postdoc who will work on this project (taking up the position at York instead of me).

Academic Year++

Another academic year is about to begin; as we greet some eager new PhD students, it's time to reflect on the past and look to the future. Last year I went to Colorado again, getting some vital data for my own PhD thesis, as well as continuing work on the electronics systems of their capillary discharge laser. A useful endeavour, it turns out, as the University of York has just agreed to buy one and I've accepted a 6 month post-doctoral position to commission it.

“Go big or go home” in the world of fusion

Over the past year or so, we have seen massive strides in the construction of ITER, which we are sure will bring long (up to half an hour is a long time in plasma physics!) periods of net energy gain from fusion. The NIF (America's National Ignition Facility laser fusion experiment) has also made some significant progress. But as we see the building which will surround ITER's beating toroidal heart rise from the ground, I've noticed a somewhat troubling trend elsewhere.

FuseNet PhD event 2014

I just returned home from the fourth annual FuseNet PhD event, organized at IST this year in Lisbon. I presented a poster about some planned future laser-plasma experiments and heard the latest developments by other PhD students working in fusion-related fields. The conference was also a good chance to catch up and network with my peers.

Wedding - The Fusion of Two People

Six FuseNet students and one bride

A Tale of Two Conferences

It has been some time since my last blog post; I've been busy. After returning from my collaboratory, I set about busily preparing for the month ahead. I made modifications to my computer code, extending it into a spatial dimension and promptly set one of our institute's computer clusters running it.

Back from America

In front of the laser; on the USB drive: Fusion Doctoral Training Network

Collaboration with a College in Colorado

So, a couple of months later and my paper has been submitted for peer review, I've presented my results at a conference and I have another nice few pages of my thesis written. Now, I've been given the chance, by Fusenet, to do something quite radically different.

Rock, Paper, Conference

Hello again. It's been an interesting couple of months of my PhD since my last entry. Read about my Halloween outfit, first paper, and experience in teaching undergraduates.

An introduction... and some history

This is my first blog on the FuseNet site, so you might be wondering how Young's Double Slit experiment helped me to get into fusion and what lasers have to do with my PhD topic...