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Word from the Chairman of the Carolus Magnus Summer School in the Netherlands

Roger Jaspers reflects on the importance and joys of summer schools:

Training the ITER generation: this is the most important goal in Fusion education. The limited availablitity of dedicated specific courses for fusion PhD students at regular universities, lead to the founding of the Carolus Magnus Summer School by the partners of the Trilateral Euregio Cluster (FOM Rijnhuizen (The Netherlands), Forschungszentrum Juelich (Germany), Royal Military Academy and SCK-CEN (Belgium).

This year, this biannual event celebrates its tenth edition in Weert (The Netherlands). In the space of 2 weeks, the 60 participating students get an exhaustive, but attractive programme. It consists of a broad and rather detailed overview of the  physics and engineering relevant to magnetically confined fusion as well as visits to FZJ (the TEXTOR tokamak) and Rijnhuizen (the MAGNUM-PSI linear device).

Students looking at magnetized exotic plasma

The setting in a holiday resort is chosen to promote the interaction and networking possibilities with fellow students, but also with the lecturers.

Now running the show for a few days, I am quite amazed by the spirit and enthusiasm of this young generation: dedicated to their work (attending all the lecturers), smart (many intriguing questions), and motivated to solve one of the main challenges of our society (the energy problem), but also open in communicating and interacting with eachother.

Although there is a large diversity of their background on the educational level (ranging from master to Phd's to Postdoc to engineers), on the cultural level (23 different nationalities) and on the research subjects, there is sufficient overlap to find common discussion points and to benefit from each others experience.

With these young bright minds entering the field, the future looks much more sunny!

Roger Jaspers