The CCPP Network in Computational Plasma Physics

Lead Research Organisation: University of Warwick
Department Name: Physics

Abstract

CCPP is the Collaborative Computational Project for Plasma Physics. It is a network of 30 UK researchers that came into existence in late 2007. It serves to develop, maintain and distribute world-leading codes for plasma physics simulations in laboratory plasma physics, including laser plasmas and fusion studies, space science and astrophysics. These codes cover the whole spectrum of plasma models from fluid treatments on astrophysical scales to fully kinetic relativistic simulations of femtosecond laser pulses. The network plans to establish a major repository of plasma physics software for the UK community and to encourage collaboration and component exchange and reuse in these developments. As these codes develop the network will also co-ordinate training for existing and new users of these codes, especially PhD students, through workshops and meetings. In all its software developments CCPP will encourage the use of and disseminate through taught courses and workshops, best practice in the use of software tools and visualization software.Since being set up CCPP has concentrated on defining common projects of UK wide benefit. Two full meetings of the CCPP members have defined the principal UK computational plasma physics needs for the immediate future. This has lead to several working groups who are looking at different areas of the CCPP remit. These include the development of a UK core kinetic code, based on the particle in cell (PIC) technique, which can be used as a common building block for advanced extensions. This core code is now released in 1D, 2D and 3D versions through CCPForge (http://ccpforge.cse.rl.ac.uk/projects/epoch/) and is called EPOCH (Extendible Open PIC Collaboration). One group is looking at developing a strategy for using adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) to alleviate the memory requirements of direct Vlasov solvers which need between 4 and 6 dimensions plus time depending on the physics problem. Another group (extended hydro models) aims to develop new algorithms for including non fluid effects into a fluid framework to allow advanced simulations in laser plasma interactions and astrophysics over long scale lengths and timescales. A final group aims to extend the UK computational capability for simulating the turbulence responsible for anomalous transport in magnetically confined fusion experiments. These codes need to solve the gyro-kinetic plasma equations in full toroidal geometry. The activity since forming the CCPP has therefore concentrated on advanced PIC, AMR Vlasov, extended hydro and gyro-kinetic codes. Of these the advanced PIC, through the EPOCH release, is the most developed and has immediate applications across the widest range of plasma physics. The track records of the principal group leaders for each of these projects are below although all 30 CCPP members are involved in at least one of the projects.

Publications

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Description This was a networking grant aimed at fostering collaboration between research groups, training of students in computational plasma physics and instructing researchers on the use of community codes. The project therefore did not have any findings. Instead it identified possible core research interests in the UK in plasma physics, shared expertise between groups and helped train a cohort of PhD students and PDRAs
Exploitation Route The collaborations on key UK plasma codes and training from this award have lead to several new software projects in fusion plasmas. The CCP network has continued funding from EPSRC and this runs until 2020. All new key findings and outcomes are filed against this newer award.
Sectors Education,Energy,Security and Diplomacy

URL http://www.ccpp.ac.uk/home/index.html
 
Description A radiation-hydrodynamic ALE code for laser fusion energy
Amount £255,109 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/I029117/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2011 
End 09/2013
 
Description CCP Flagship Project
Amount £380,448 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/M011534/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 04/2015 
End 03/2018
 
Description Centre for Computational Plasma Physics
Amount £264,129 (GBP)
Organisation Atomic Weapons Establishment 
Sector Private
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2017 
End 09/2022
 
Description Multi-scale simulations of intense laser-plasma interactions
Amount £439,082 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/G054940/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2010 
End 03/2014
 
Description ODIN
Amount £255,110 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/I029117/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2011 
End 09/2013
 
Description Plasma Physics HEC Consortia
Amount £279,000 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/L000237/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 05/2013 
End 05/2018
 
Title Odin 
Description Odin is a 2D r-z geometry multi-material MHD ALE code. This is maintained on a private gitlab server along with detailed documentation. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2017 
Impact This is the first full release of the Odin code but is currently restricted to the development team only. This includes researchers at Exeter, Warwick, Imperial College and York. This release is the first full Odin release which is able to complete simulations of pellet implosion for inertial confinement fusion (ICF). It includes MHD, conduction and a generalised Ohm's law. The ability to begin ICF simulations, albeit with an early release version of the Odin code, is essential for keeping the UK academic community actively involved in international ICF programmes. 
URL https://cfsa-pmw.warwick.ac.uk/Odin/Odin
 
Title Release of EPOCH code 
Description Release of the EPOCH particle-in-cell code as a publicly available software package. EPOCH has been developed primarily at the University of Warwick as a multi-purpose plasma simulation code. QED algorithms and code to model gamma-ray and electron-positron pair production were developed at Oxford. Warwick implemented the QED package in the publicly released version of EPOCH. The fully documented code is available at https://cfsa-pmw.warwick.ac.uk/EPOCH/epoch. It is being used by experimentalists and theorists from many countries. This initial release of EPOCH was in 2011 but this is continually updated. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2016 
Open Source License? Yes  
Impact The UK is now recognised as a world leading centre for kinetic plasma simulations for laser-plasmas 
URL https://cfsa-pmw.warwick.ac.uk/EPOCH/epoch