Research interests and technical skills

Jonathan Shimwell


To perform automated parametric multiphysics analysis of breeder blanket designs with an aim of optimising the design.



To perform automated parametric multiphysics analysis of breeder blanket designs with an aim of optimising the design.


Selection of design parameters

Parametric CAD construction

Neutronics simulation for TBR and EM

Converstion to unstructured mesh

Neutronics simulation for volumetric heating

Converstion to engineering mesh

Simulations to find stress and temperature

Evaluate design

    Converstion to      CGS

Interpolate performance    & design sensitivity

Demonstration parameter study

Interpolation of results

Li4SiO4 with 60% 6Li and Be

Tritium production

Li4SiO4 at 60% 6Li enrichment with Be

Procedure for obtaining volumetric heating

  • Neutron and photon heating simulated and results passed to engineering codes
  • Parametric CAD models created using Python scripts and automatically converted to neutronics models
  • Unstructured mesh applied to the geometry        

Automated CAD models for different blanket geometries

HCLL blanket design showing cooling channels in the first wall

Automated hex and conformal tet meshing

Neutronics mesh

Engineering mesh

Data mapping from hex to tet mesh

Neutronics mesh simulation results

Engineering mesh interpolated values


Fully automated hex meshing of the geometry to abaques format for use with MCNP 6 unstructured mesh

Volumetric heating

Heating values obtained on unstructured mesh that conforms to material boundaries. 



Volumetric heating



Component Be12Ti Be
Lithium ceramic 15.9 17.2
Eurofer first wall 6.2 5.8
Tungsten armour 28.1 26.4
Neutron multiplier 4.8 5.0

Heating W/cm3

with 60% 6Li enrichment

Automatically identifying regions

First wall heat flux

Coolant outlet

Coolant inlet

Current work

  • Changing software used for meshing and neutronics simulations to avoid licensed software.
  • Moving simulations to the cloud. This will allow high throughput, high performance and simulation on demand.

Parametric DEMO reactor

18 coils

  • Magnetic equilibrium solved


  • Plasma ripple kept below limit
  • Model includes
    • poloidal field coils
    • toroidal field coils
    • gravity supports
    • intercoil connections

16 coils

  • detailed breeder blankets
    • detailed breeder blankets

Produced using an early

version of Nova by S McIntosh

Parametric DEMO reactor

Produced Nova by S McIntosh

Parametric DEMO source

Source points generated using

Parametric Serpent source routine

by Alex burns

Automated Neutronics analysis in MCNP, Serpent and Fispact


Design user interfaces and regularly carries out data analysis

Automatic processing and getting started with NOSQL databases

Ubuntu, Linux, Virtual machines and Amazon Cloud computing

A track record of software development in large scientific projects using python and web technologies.

Flask, nginx, python, HTML5, JavaScript, JQuery and AngularJS

Good communication skills, presentation awards and languages

Advanced skills in neutronics analysis and nuclear physics

overview of research progress

By Jonathan Shimwell