During the fall of 2022, I did an internship project at the university of Hiroshima, Japan. During my time here I researched the effect of a pressure anisotropy on the MHD stability of plasmas in the large helical device (LHD). This research was done by performing magnetic equilibrium simulations and then applying a linear MHD stability code to the resulting equilibrium. These simulations were run using different pressure profiles, which correspond with different heating schemes such as NBI heating, ICRH and ECRH. The results of these simulations have been summarised in a paper, which will be submitted to a scientific journal in the near future.
During my internship project I did some literature research on both the equilibrium and MHD stability codes. After this, I ran many simulations for different pressure profiles while continuously discussing the results with my supervisor, Prof. Yasuhiro Suzuki. During my time in Hiroshima, Prof. Suzuki has provided me invaluable guidance for my project. He was always available for questions and I have had many discussions with him during the project. At the same time he also made a large effort to make my stay in Japan (which still suffered from strict COVID-19 regulations at the time of moving there) possible.
Apart from the internship project I spent a good number of weekends exploring Japan, visiting cities such as Hiroshima, Osaka and Tokyo, as well as Miyajima, an island close to Hiroshima. The sight of the Hiroshima peace memorial was especially impressive to behold. Given that I lived on the university campus and that I worked in a room with many PHD/master students, I was able to make a few friends to hang out with during the weekends and evenings. It was especially fun to visit the so-called Izakaya bars and wind down after work. Overall, my time in Japan was a lot of fun and I have learned a lot. It was also lucky that I was able to go there after the COVID-19 pandemic.