DIFFER contracted to develop simulation framework for ITER

July 12th 2022

DIFFER, together with Dutch and Polish partners, has been awarded a contract to develop an integrated modeling simulation framework for the fusion reactor ITER. The framework is based on MUSCLE 3, a software library built by the Computational Science Lab (University of Amsterdam) and the Netherlands eScience Center, that facilitates the coupling of different physics models within a single simulation.

The future simulation framework assists with predictions of plasma behavior in ITER’s fusion reactor. These simulations are complicated due to multiple physics processes that all have to be modelled separately and tied together.

Independent communicating components
Multi-physics simulations like for ITER plasmas need to couple together different physics codes, sometimes written in different languages. “Tightly coupling these different codes into a single simulation package can be challenging from a software engineering perspective,” says Jonathan Citrin. He leads DIFFER’s Integrated Modeling and Transport Group (read an interview with Citrin).

MUSCLE 3 provides an elegant solution whereby the different codes are not tightly coupled together, but are run as independent components. MUSCLE 3 coordinates the workflow and carries out the communication between components. Citrin: “We are adapting MUSCLE 3 to work with ITER’s Integrated Modelling and Analysis Suite, and helping ITER develop demonstration simulation workflows.”

The consortium consists of DIFFER, the Poznan Supercomputing and Networking Center (Poland), and Ignition Computing (Dutch startup). The consortium is advised by the Netherlands eScience Center, which co-developed MUSCLE 3.


The views and opinions expressed above are those of DIFFER and do not necessarily reflect those of the ITER Organization.