Curriculum

The Department of FUSION SCIENCE provides specialized subjects that are essential for studying fusion science from basic principles to cutting edge topics. This department also manages the Comprehensive Subjects Program (an interdepartmental program) and common subjects offered by the School of Physical Sciences. (See the table below for details.)

♠ Requirements for Graduation

  • Enrollment in a department of SOKENDAI for five years (three years for the 3-year course) or more.
  • Earning at least 42 credits as prescribed by the course registration rules (12 credits for the 3-year course).
  • Having received the necessary research supervision by a supervisor, and having successfully completed a doctoral thesis and the final examination.
  • A student recognized by his/her department as a “student that has accomplished outstanding research results” may graduate before completing the required period of attendance.
SubjectCreditContent of Subject
Plasma Physics I2Fundamentals to learn plasma physics are lectured. First of all, single charged particle motions, then plasma behavior as fluids, diffusion, and waves in plasmas are explained. For the basic fusion plasma study, magnetohydrodynamics, equilibrium and stability are alsoexplained. Introductions to the kinetic theory and nonlinear effects are performed for advanced studies.
Plasma Physics II 2Fundamental physics concepts for understanding the characteristic of fusion plasmas which are necessary in the plasma research will be described. Both aspects of the microscopic particle property and the macroscopic fluid property in the plasma behavior will be explained. The contents are composed of motion of a charged particle in various electromagnetic fields, relations between the distribution function in velocity space and the plasma fluid description, magnetohydrodynamic equilibrium and stability, waves in plasmas, basic idea of transport and resistivity and so on.
Fundamentals of
Plasma Experiment
2The aim of the lecture is to learn error analysis for allowing the scientists to estimate how large his uncertainties are, and to help him to reduce them when necessary. The basics of plasma diagnosis are reviewed. The error analysis based on the mathematical statistics and the least-squares fitting as its application are studied. The normal distribution and other important distributions are treated.
Advances in Plasma
Science
2The basic physics of plasma transport at the peripheral region and plasma-wall interaction in magnetically confined fusion devices are explained. Especially, the divertor system receives and should handle huge heat flux coming from main plasma. The lecture presents the history of the divertor development and critical issues for next step fusion devices. In addition, the basics of atomic and molecular processes applied in fusion and related plasma researches are given, including atomic and molecular physics. Kinetics of chemical reactions, and collisionalradiative model for spectroscopic diagnostics.
Fusion System
Engineering
2This lecture is an introduction to fusion engineering. Features and functions of fusion power plant systems and their subsystems such as superconducting magnets, heating devices, divertor, and blankets are reviewed. Concerning the magnets, properties of materials at low temperatures and superconductivity are reviewed, and their issues are discussed. In addition, technical issues of divertor and blankets for high heat flux and neutron irradiation are discussed.
Fusion Reactor
Materials
2Theories of elasticity, plasticity, strengthening and radiation damage of materials are reviewed. Tensile testing is explained as a major examination for materials, leading to a lesson in evaluation procedures and analyses on the test results. Materials adopted for the ITER, and candidate materials promising for future demonstration (DEMO) reactors are introduced including key properties. Based on the gap between neutron irradiation conditions and operation temperatures in the ITER and DEMO reactors, improvements of properties are discussed with some examples of recent fusion materials development.
Fundamentals of
Simulation Science
2Learn the basic methods of computer simulation, a powerful tool for investigating complex plasma phenomena. Concepts, basic equations, algorithms, typical simulations performed by practical programs, their visualizations, limitations and numerical errors are described for particle and fluid models commonly used in plasma simulations.
Mathematical Physics2Various methods of mathematical physics are used to treat complex physical systems such as plasmas in which diverse collective phenomena are produced by a huge number of charged particles interacting with each other through electromagnetic force. This lecture presents basic methods of mathematical physics used in analytical and statistical mechanics. As examples of application, one learns plasma kinetic theory, fluid model, and transport theory.
Scientific English
Writing and Presentation
at International
Conferences
2Because international collaboration is often required for the successful development of magnetic fusion energy, as seen in the case of ITER, the ability of communication in English is a “prerequisite” to be a  successful research scientist.  A series of lectures will provide students with the basic knowledge to write and present technical papers in English for international conferences, also with practice in reading technical literature and a with a review of relevant grammatical topics.
Fusion plasma science
exercise I A
2Exercises of experimental, theoretical and simulation science are given by advisering professors and other teachers. Discussions on the processes and results of research are guided which are necessary to complete educational course.
Fusion plasma science
exercise I B
2
Fusion plasma science
exercise II A
2
Fusion plasma science
exercise II B
2
Fusion plasma science
exercise III A
2
Fusion plasma science
exercise III B
2
Fusion plasma science
exercise IV A
2
Fusion plasma science
exercise IV B
2
Fusion plasma science
exercise V A
2
Fusion plasma science
exercise V B
2
Fusion plasma science
investigation I A
2Seminar is organized for small number of students on fusion plasma science. Basic scientific knowledge, intelligence and flexibility are trained for the basis of original research. Teachers in the same research field as students lead seminar as core members.
Fusion plasma science
investigation I B
2
Fusion plasma science
investigation II A
2
Fusion plasma science
investigation II B
2
Fusion plasma science
investigation III A
2
Fusion plasma science
investigation III B
2
Fusion plasma science
investigation IV A
2
Fusion plasma science
investigation IV B
2
Fusion plasma science
investigation V A
2
Fusion plasma science
investigation V B
2
Exercise of scientific
paper analysis
2To write academic papers, it is important to conduct excellent research, but in fact it alone is not enough. “Method of research” differs depending on each theme, but there is a common “method of writing” when summarizing results of research as an academic paper. Rather than merely listing the research results, a story from the intro to the conclusion is necessary. How to make this story will be explained as a “way of writing”.
Fusion plasma science
seminar
2Learn latest information on research activities by attending colloquiums on fusion plasma sciences. Improve students’ ability of preparing and talking their presentations and learn techniques for making an excellent presentation. Study how to examine their own and others’ researches on fusion plasma sciences by joining the discussions in the colloquiums.
Basic exercise on physics and engineering Ⅰ2This exercise program gives you the basic knowledge to start experimental research on fusion plasma science. The program provides lectures and practices on the most important technologies in (1) vacuum instruments, (2) electrical and optical signal measurement systems, and (3) high current / voltage power supply usage and design. This knowledge is useful for studying not only fusion plasmas such as LHD plasmas, but also basic laboratory plasmas.
Basic exercise on physics and engineering Ⅱ2In this exercise program, the bases of the following techniques are given:
– the handling of the radiation, which is necessary for safe experimental study in fusion experimental devices
– the handling of the cryogenic system including the high pressure gas facility that is acquired for the superconducting coil and cryogenic system in fusion experimental devices.
– the handling of facilities of material analyses and fabrications which are necessary for studies of plasmawall interactions and the fusion engineering.
Basic exercise on physics and engineering Ⅲ2This exercise program gives the basic knowledge of data processing, theoretical analyses, and numerical simulations which are required in plasma physics researches. In particular, data and image processes (visualizations), fundamentals of simulation studies for UNIX and Fortran programing, and applied mathematics such as vector analyses and complex analyses will be practiced.

Class Schedule

Training Programs

Training programs are offered in order to foster researchers with “broad perspectives” beyond the educational programs of “high-expertise” by cutting-edge researchers in our department.

First-year Course
This course will also be held for new students of SOKENDAI after the entrance ceremony. It addresses the philosophy of SOKENDAI and provides guidelines for living a fulfi lling student life. It will include lectures by the President, deans, and senior researchers, as well as the School Orientation Lecture and special lectures. The course will also help new students receive guidance and build networks through interaction with other students as well as faculty members and academic staff .

Physical Science Student Seminar
This seminar is planned and operated by the students as a subject, and special lectures, group exercises and presentations are held with the aim of deepening mutual understanding and acquiring a broad perspective.

 

 

International Education Program

As part of the international science education, which is one of the educational ideals of SOKENDAI, this program offers symposia and seminars for international applicants. As an example, the “SOKENDAI Asian Winter School” offers a series of lectures and training courses for students and young scientists predominantly from Asian countries who are interested in the fusion energy development.

The Short-Stay Study Abroad Program
This program is supported by a grant from the university that enables students to take part in international joint research projects. These projects foster highly specialized world-class researchers who have global perspectives. The program provides students opportunities to study at cutting-edge research institutes abroad for from two to twelve weeks in order to pursue in-depth study with a number of prominent researchers. Approximately 10 proposals in total are accepted each year.

Credits/Degrees

Requirements for Graduation/Required Number of Credits

1. To graduate from SOKENDAI, the following requirements must be met.

● For 5-year course students
○ Enrollment in a School of SOKENDAI for five years or more
○ Earning at least the required number of credits as prescribed by the course registration rules of each School
○ Having undergone the necessary research supervision by a supervisor, successful examination of a doctoral thesis and successful completion of a final examination
○ Full payment of the required tuition fees (except for those who are exempted from tuition payment)

● For 3-year course students
○ Enrollment in a School of SOKENDAI for three years or more
○ Earning at least the required number of credits as set forth in the course registration rules provided on a department basis by the Schools.
○ Having undergone the necessary research supervision by a supervisor, successful examination of a doctoral thesis and successful completion of a final examination
○ Full payment of the required tuition fees (except for those who are exempted from tuition payment)

2. The table below shows the required number of credits for graduation specified by each department.

【five-year doctoral course】
(1) Those who are taking the five-year doctoral course must complete 42 or more credits from the Department’s Special Subjects, Common Specialized Subjects of the School of Physical Sciences, Comprehensive Subjects and subjects offered by the Course-by-Course Education Program in Physics.
(2) The total credits as specified in (1) must include 2 credits from Freshman Course in Interdepartmental Program.
(3) The total credits as specified in (1) must include the compulsory subjects provided in the requirements for completing the Course-by-Course Education Program in Physics.
(4) The credits described in (1) may include up to 4 credits from the other Departments.

【three-year doctoral course】
(1) Those who are taking the three-year doctoral course must complete 12 or more credits from the Department’s Special Subjects, common Specialized Subjects of the School of Physical Sciences, Comprehensive Subjects and subjects offered by the Course-by-Course Education Program in Physics.
(2) The total credits as specified in (1) must include 2 credits from Freshman Course in Interdepartmental Program.
(3) The total credits as specified in (1) must include the compulsory subjects provided in the requirements for completing the Course-by-Course Education Program in Physics.
(4) The credits described in (1) may include up to 4 credits from the other Departments.

CourseTerm of enrollmentNumber of credits
5-year course5 years42
3-year course3 years12

Degree to be awarded

All the students who graduate from SOKENDAI obtain the degree of “Doctor of Philosophy”, “Doctor of Science”, or “Doctor of Engineering” depend on the contents of the doctoral theses.

[*Master’s degree]
Students who have registered in the 5-year course and are permitted to withdraw from SOKENDAI and have satisfied the requirements for obtaining a master’s degree as set forth in Article #16 of the Standards for the Establishment of Graduate Schools may be awarded a master’s degree.

Evaluation criteria for the doctoral thesis in the Department of Fusion Science

The doctoral thesis will be reviewed based upon the philosophy of the department and upon the perspectives of the internal and external members of the doctoral thesis committee regarding fusion research.

  1. Clarity of the objective and the academic significance of the research results
  2. Originality of the research
  3. Sufficient knowledge in the field of specialization and sufficient language skills for international activity
  4. Publication(s) in peer-reviewed journal(s) as first author or publication plans based upon results in the doctoral thesis

Schedule for the Evaluation of Doctoral Thesis in the Department of Fusion Science

syllabus


Search and View a course syllabus   You can search for a specific course syllabus with the search engine.


Special Lectures for Graduate School

Those lectures are open for providing the basic technology and information to the graduate students. Not only the SOKENDAI students but also any other university students or working persons can participate in those lectures.

For attending a lecture or asking any related question, please contact to daigakuin@nifs.ac.jp .

Download the syllabus collection

International Coordinated Research

Since its infancy, fusion research has been advanced through peaceful international coordination, and today broad-ranging research is conducted in many countries around the world. Further research and development toward making fusion reactors a reality requires the promotion of joint research programs based on a long-term outlook which bring together the knowledge of researchers not just in Japan, but from around the world. NIFS plays the role of an organization representing Japan in the international coordination of fusion research. Along with this, we are actively advancing joint research and exchange among researchers through international coordination. Regarding the ITER Project and the Broader Approach (BA), global projects that are currently in progress, we are cooperating in various ways, such as by contributing to the International Tokamak Physics Activity (ITPA), by sending experts, and by providing several technologically-advanced devices conducive to further development.

Examples of International Coordination

  • The IEA Stellarator-Heliotron Agreement
    International Stellarator-Heliotron Confinement and Profile Database Activity

Extensive multi-national and multi^institutional coordinated research among Stellarator-Heliotron(S-H) devices has been promoted under the auspices of the IEA (International Energy Agency) Implementing Agreement for Cooperation in Development of the Stellarator-Heliotron Concept.  Contracting parties are Australia, the EU, Japan, Russia, Ukraine, and the USA (in alphabetical order).  Among them, Japan, through the Director General of the National Institute for Fusion Science, is performing leadership responsibilities as vice-chair.  The scaling law for the energy confinement time, the so-called ISS04, was successfully derived based on the extended S-H confinement database.  Toward deepening physics understanding and increasing the predictive capability, the Profile database activity has been steadily expanded with the participation of multiple institutions.

  • Japan-United States Collabrative Program
    Neutron Irradiation of Fusion Reactor Materials

Installation of the capsule assembly into the HFIR (courtesy of ORNL)

In a Joint Project of the Japan-United States Fusion Cooperation Program, neutron irradiation of fusion reactor materials has been carried out using the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) as Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).  In this collaboration, technologies for varying iirdiation temperature, in-situ measurements on resistivity, irradiation in liquid lithium enviroments, and irradiation at very high temperature have been developed.  The photograph shows the installation of the irradiation capsule assembly into the HFIR.  In the ongoing Joint Project PHENIX(2013-2018), irradiation effects on plasma-facing tungsten alloys are being investigated, including the tests of high heat flux performance and of tritium retention properties of the irradiated materials.

The Short-Stay Study Abroad Program

This programs is supported by a grant from the University that enables the students to take part in international joint research projects. These projects foster highly specialized world-class researchers who have global perspectives. It provides students opportunities to study at cutting-edge research institutes abroad and to pursue in-depth study with a number of prominent researchers. Students are able to gauge the positioning of their own research and forge friendships and make exchanges with new colleagues.

Financial support for student

We have enhanced the financial support system so that students may concentrate on their studies.

(1)Exemption from Tuition

When a student has difficulty paying tuition for economic reasons, the student recognized for outstanding academic achievements may be exempted from paying full tuition or one-half tuition following the prescribed screening by SOKENDAI.

(2)Research Fellowships for Young Scientists from Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS)

This research fellowship offers third-year students and higher the opportunity to concentrate on their research. A research subsidy (living expenses) will be paid after successfully passing the prescribed screening. At the same time, the student must meet the qualification requirements for eligibility to receive a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (KAKENHI) grant. These grants will be provided after a screening each year.

(3)Monbukagakusho(Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, MEXT)Honors Scholarship for Privately Financed International Students

The MEXT Honors Scholarship for Privately Financed International Students is provided by the Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO). This scholarship is intended for exceptional privately funded international students, and is an open competition.

(4)The Research Assistant system at NIFS

Excellent students who are in the third-year or higher at NIFS can participate in research projects. This Research Assistant system promotes research effectively and develops the abilities of young researchers. When a student is appointed as a Research Assistant, a research scholarship will be provided.

(5)Other scholarships, research grants, and travel expenses

Students may apply for scholarships, grants for research, and other funding in addition to those described above. Among these sources of funding, there also are those that are advertised publicly for open competition and those intended only for students enrolled in the fusion science program. Also, NIFS and SOKENDAI will pay travel expenses for a student to attend an academic conference.

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