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Using Python Modules in Real-Time Plasma Systems for Fusion

Ferron N.; Manduchi G.

Journal: Sensors (Basel) 22 (18), pp. 1 - 10 Year: 2022
ISTP Authors:
Gabriele Manduchi

Keywords: ,
Research Activitie:

One of the most important applications of sensors is feedback control, in which an algorithm is applied to data that are collected from sensors in order to drive system actuators and achieve the desired outputs of the target plant. One of the most challenging applications of this control is represented by magnetic confinement fusion, in which real-time systems are responsible for the confinement of plasma at a temperature of several million degrees within a toroidal container by means of strong electromagnetic fields. Due to the fast dynamics of the underlying physical phenomena, data that are collected from electromagnetic sensors must be processed in real time. In most applications, real-time systems are implemented in C++; however, Python applications are now becoming more and more widespread, which has raised potential interest in their applicability in real-time systems. In this study, a framework was set up to assess the applicability of Python in real-time systems. For this purpose, a reference operating system configuration was chosen, which was optimized for real time, together with a reference framework for real-time data management. Within this framework, the performance of modules that computed PID control and FFT transforms was compared for C++ and Python implementations, respectively. Despite the initial concerns about Python applicability in real-time systems, it was found that the worst-case execution time (WCET) could also be safely defined for modules that were implemented in Python, thereby confirming that they could be considered for real-time applications.

ID 471952
DOI 10.3390/s22186847
PRODUCT TYPE Journal Article
LAST UPDATE 2022-10-11T14:26:41Z