Antonio Peña, Director of the IFMIF-DONES Implementation Office (2017-December 2020) and current main co-researcher of the DONES Preparatory Phase Project at the University of Granada, visited students at Colegio Virgen de Gracia after almost 30 years. During his visit, the researcher gave a talk to a total of 80 secondary school students about energy, black holes and time travelling, as well as the International Fusion Materials Irradiation Facility (IFMIF).
Explaining to young students the necessary steps to obtain energy from nuclear fusion as if a small piece of the Sun had been brought to Earth is not an easy task give the complexity of this research. However, the students impressed the speaker with their interest in physics and pertinent questions, who had been positively motivated by their teachers.
The students had the opportunity to learn about IFMIF-DONES, and it was clarified that besides being an important step to develop valuable technologies in different fields (accelerators with high intensity and high-power cycles, liquid metal loops and advanced control systems) it will play a significant role in the applications of nuclear fusion in the massive production of energy. In doing so ‘Europe will continue at the forefront of nuclear fusion science and technology development’. To conclude, the former Director explained that the DONES Prep project will allow to continue with the design running in parallel with other programs and will strengthen the joint framework of action of the countries involved.