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Plasma Liner Formation and FRC Compression

Author: George R Votroubek
Requested Type: Consider for Invited
Submitted: 2011-06-10 16:16:28

Co-authors: John Slough

Contact Info:
8551 154th Ave NE
Redmond, WA   98296

Abstract Text:
The Field Reversed Configuration (FRC) plasmoid’s stability, robustness, and self-organization have been demonstrated in many experiments employing a variety of formation methods over the last 50 years. A new formation method capable of remotely forming a hot, stable, and stationary FRC that can be further compressed to fusion conditions has been developed at MSNW. The formation method consists of the super-sonic merging of two FRCs, which are independently formed outside of the central compression chamber. Upon collision in the center of the compression chamber, the FRCs merge and become stationary, thereby thermalizing their translational kinetic energy.

In the Plasma Liner Compression (PLC) experiment, the target FRC is positioned in a compression chamber where it is either magnetically compressed by the increasing flux from a theta-pinch coil, or by the theta-pinch implosion of a pre-formed plasma liner. The plasma liner is formed via an annular array of 32 axially directed MPD plasma sources near the vacuum chamber walls in the compression area. Xenon gas is ionized by the plasma sources, magnetized to the ~ 0.1 T bias field which keeps the Xenon liner confined to an annulus near the chamber wall. The FRC is ideally vacuum isolated from the Xenon plasma liner due to the bias field, which also acts as the guide field required for FRC merging.

Final results of plasma liner formation, FRC formation, FRC flux compression and plasma liner compression will be discussed and compared to MHD code calculations. The suite of diagnostics deployed and developed for the PLC experiment will be detailed and utilized to compare experimental results to other FRC compression experiments

Characterization: C


University of Washington

Workshop on Innovation in Fusion Science (ICC2011) and
US-Japan Workshop on Compact Torus Plasma
August 16-19, 2011
Seattle, Washington

ICC 2011