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Adrien Abrassart - internship at IPP Prague

Thanks to the support of Fusenet, I have been able to work 6 months at the Institute of Plasma Physics of Prague. I am a French mechanical engineer and I have been working on a linear manipulator to perform tests on metallic samples within the vacuum chamber of the tokamak COMPASS. Indeed, physicists are currently searching for the best way to design divertor tiles for the new tokamak that will be created in Prague: The COMPASS-Upgrade, and for ITER, the biggest tokamak in the world, currently under construction in the south of France.

One way of designing the divertor tiles would be to make them from lithium, which would melt as the plasma hits it. The liquid metal induces high resistance facing plasma, good cooling medium and no neutron-induced damage.

But before creating whole lithium divertor tiles, it is important to verify if the presence of this material does not create any problem for the plasma, nor the tokamak. That is why we have designed a manipulator which puts a sample of lithium inside the vacuum chamber of the Tokamak at a very accurate position and orientation. This device is now fully designed, and manufacturing will start quickly. It will be fully operational in April 2019.

As part from my internship, I also had the chance to discover Prague. This city is wonderful and holds a lot of historical monuments, interesting museums, breathtaking viewpoints, cheap bars and delicious restaurants. The life here is not too expensive, so it is possible to go out, meet really nice people and have fun in the crazy nightlife of the city.

I think it is very interesting to bury one's nose into the history of Prague and Bohemia, because it holds a very important part of the European history and is full of interesting stories and legends. Also, it is always good to search for hidden places that tourist guides do not talk about, because this is where the real Prague appears.

- Adrien Abrassart