OF INTEREST: New director for MIT fusion centre

​In November, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) announced a new director for its Plasma Science and Fusion Center, home to the Alcator C-Mod tokamak.

As of 1 January 2015, Dennis Whyte, professor of nuclear science and engineering, will replace Miklos Porkolab, who returns to teaching and research after nearly 20 years as head of the research centre.

In the announcement, Maria Zuber, MIT’s vice president for research, thanked Porkolab "for almost 20 years of distinguished leadership and contributions to MIT and the fusion energy community worldwide."

Whyte is a recognized leader in the field of nuclear fusion, with his research addressing the boundary plasma-material interfaces in magnetic fusion.

He received his PhD from the University of Québec’s National Institute of Scientific Research in 1993 and joined the MIT faculty in 2006. His recent research has focused on the novel application of high-energy ion beams for real-time material interrogation in fusion environments, and the use of new high magnetic field superconductor materials for compact, robust fusion pilot plants for electricity production. He was recently recognized with the International Atomic Energy Agency’s 2013 Nuclear Fusion Journal Prize, which was presented at the 25th biennial IAEA Fusion Energy Conference last month, for research carried out on Alcator C-Mod.

Read the full story on the MIT website.