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  • 1
    ISSN: 1089-7674
    Source: AIP Digital Archive
    Topics: Physics
    Notes: Detailed analysis of recent high beta discharges in the DIII-D [Plasma Physics Controlled Nuclear Fusion Research, 1986 (International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna, 1987), Vol. I, p. 159] tokamak demonstrates that the resistive vacuum vessel can provide stabilization of low n magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) modes. The experimental beta values reaching up to βT=12.6% are more than 30% larger than the maximum stable beta calculated with no wall stabilization. Plasma rotation is essential for stabilization. When the plasma rotation slows sufficiently, unstable modes with the characteristics of the predicted "resistive wall'' mode are observed. Through slowing of the plasma rotation between the q=2 and q=3 surfaces with the application of a nonaxisymmetric field, it has been determined that the rotation at the outer rational surfaces is most important, and that the critical rotation frequency is of the order of Ω/2π=1 kHz. © 1995 American Institute of Physics.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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  • 2
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    [S.l.] : American Institute of Physics (AIP)
    Physics of Plasmas 1 (1994), S. 1415-1431 
    ISSN: 1089-7674
    Source: AIP Digital Archive
    Topics: Physics
    Notes: Stability at high beta (the ratio of plasma pressure to magnetic field pressure) is an important requirement for a compact, economically attractive fusion reactor. It is also important in present large tokamak experiments, where the best performance is now often limited by instabilities rather than by energy transport. The past decade has seen major advances in our understanding of the stability of high beta tokamak plasmas, as well as in the achievement of high values of beta. Ideal magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) theory has been remarkably successful in predicting the stability limits, and the scaling of maximum stable beta with the normalized plasma current predicted by Troyon and others has been confirmed in many experiments, yielding a limit βmax≈3.5 (%-m-T/MA) I/aB (where I is the plasma current, a is the minor radius, and B is the toroidal field). The instabilities which are predicted to limit beta have been observed experimentally, in good agreement with theoretical predictions, including long-wavelength kink modes and short-wavelength ballooning instabilities. Advances in understanding of tokamak stability have opened several paths to higher values of beta. The use of strong discharge shaping, approaching the limits of axisymmetric stability, has allowed beta values as high as 12% to be reached in agreement with Troyon scaling. Recent experimental results and ideal MHD modeling have shown that the beta limit depends on the form of the pressure and current density profiles, and modification of the current density to create a centrally peaked profile has allowed beta values up to 6I/aB to be achieved experimentally.Recent experiments have also begun to explore both local and global access to the predicted second stable regime for ballooning modes, with the potential for very high values of β/(I/aB). Preliminary experimental investigations of wall stabilization and radio-frequency (RF) current profile control hold the promise of further improvements in beta through passive and active control of instabilities. The developing understanding of high beta stability and the application of this understanding to present experiments and future fusion devices hold the potential for production of stable, steady state plasmas at high beta with good confinement.
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1089-7666
    Source: AIP Digital Archive
    Topics: Physics
    Notes: Improvement in both the energy confinement time and the achievable value of normalized beta is obtained by modifying the current density profile from the relatively broad shape obtained in standard tokamak discharges to a more peaked shape. The peaked current profile is produced with either a rapid negative ramp in the total plasma current or a rapid increase in the discharge elongation. Discharges have been obtained with βN=β/(I/aB)=6% mT/MA simultaneously with total energy confinement time two times the value predicted by L-mode scaling relations. Up to a factor of 1.8 improvement in the normalized thermal energy confinement time, τth/Ip, has been obtained in both L-mode and H-mode discharges. It is shown that the increase in confinement can be attributed to a local decrease in the thermal diffusivity that is correlated with a local increase in the poloidal magnetic field and the magnetic shear.
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  • 4
    ISSN: 1089-7666
    Source: AIP Digital Archive
    Topics: Physics
    Notes: A regime of very high confinement (VH mode) has recently been observed in DIII-D with global energy confinement times up to a factor of 3.5 above the ITER89-P L-mode scaling [Nucl. Fusion 30, 1999 (1990)] and 1.5 to 2 times greater than the DIII-D/JET edge-localized-mode-free H-mode scaling relation [Nucl. Fusion 31, 73 (1991)]. These discharges were obtained after boronization in DIII-D and are characterized by low radiated power and Zeff, increasing confinement time during the VH phase of the discharge and low Ohmic target density. The low radiated power and Zeff are a consequence of the boronization. During the VH phase these discharges exhibit an inward shift in the region of highest electric field shear and a large calculated edge bootstrap current. The outer region (ρ(approximately-greater-than)0.85) is calculated to be in the second stable regime to ideal ballooning modes.
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  • 5
    ISSN: 1089-7666
    Source: AIP Digital Archive
    Topics: Physics
    Notes: Low-q (q95〈3) double-null divertor discharges with values of the volume-average toroidal beta as high as 9.3% have been operated in the DIII-D tokamak [Fusion Technol. 8, 441 (1985)]. In discharges with q95≈5, values of βT/(I/aB) as high as 5 have been obtained. These discharges are shown to be at or below the stability limit to the value of beta for infinite-n, ideal ballooning modes. The discharges are significantly below the beta limit for ideal,low toroidal mode number kink modes. The kink mode beta limit is shown to be strongly dependent on the radial profiles of plasma pressure and current. The theoretical beta limit in DIII-D is shown to be in the range βT/(I/aB)=4 –5 depending on the value of I/aB, and this is consistent with the experiment. High-beta discharges have been operated with ion temperature up to 17 keV. Steady-state, high-beta, low-q operation is demonstrated by a discharge with I/aB=2.6, q95=2.7, in which βT〉7% is maintained for 1.5 sec.
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  • 6
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    New York, NY : American Institute of Physics (AIP)
    Physics of Fluids 5 (1993), S. 2176-2186 
    ISSN: 1089-7666
    Source: AIP Digital Archive
    Topics: Physics
    Notes: Intense fast-ion populations created by neutral-beam injection into a tokamak can destabilize toroidicity-induced Alfvén eigenmodes (TAE modes) or internal kink modes. Experimentally, these modes stabilize when fast ions are ejected from the plasma, producing a cycle of relaxation oscillations about the marginal stability point. A pair of coupled differential equations describes this cycle. This simple theoretical formalism successfully describes the cycles observed during TAE experiments in DIII-D [Plasma Physics Controlled Nuclear Fusion Research, 1986 (International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna, 1987), Vol. 1, p. 159].
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  • 7
    ISSN: 1089-7666
    Source: AIP Digital Archive
    Topics: Physics
    Notes: It is shown that the theoretical predictions and experimental observations of toroidicity-induced Alfvén eigenmodes (TAE's) are now in good agreement, with particularly detailed agreement in the mode frequencies. Calculations of the driving and damping rates predict the importance of continuum damping for low toroidal mode numbers and this is confirmed experimentally. However, theoretical calculations in finite-β, shaped discharges predict the existence of other global Alfvén modes, in particular the ellipticity-induced Alfvén eigenmode (EAE) and a new mode, the beta-induced Alfvén eigenmode (BAE). The BAE mode is calculated to be in or below the same frequency range as the TAE mode and may contribute to the experimental observations at high β. Experimental evidence and complementary analyses are presented confirming the presence of the EAE mode at higher frequencies.
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  • 8
    ISSN: 1089-7666
    Source: AIP Digital Archive
    Topics: Physics
    Notes: A variational ideal magnetohydrodynamic stability code is used to compute the toroidicity-induced Alfvén eigenmode (TAE) for toroidal mode number n=1 in full toroidal geometry with circular cross section. At finite aspect ratio, toroidicity also couples poloidal mode numbers m with m+2 to produce a higher frequency gap in the shear Alfvén spectrum, which is associated with a new, second-order TAE mode. It is also found that toroidal coupling between the TAE modes and continuum branches induces splitting of the TAE modes into two or more global modes at slightly different frequencies. Both the new modes and splitting of the TAE modes have important consequences for the identification of TAE modes in experiments.
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  • 9
    ISSN: 1089-7666
    Source: AIP Digital Archive
    Topics: Physics
    Notes: A theoretical and experimental evaluation of axisymmetric stability and axisymmetric control has led to a modification of the vertical position control in the DIII-D tokamak, which now allows operation to within a few percent of the ideal magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) n=0 limit. It is found that the onset the departure from rigid shift behavior in D-shaped plasmas limits plasma elongation to 2.5 in DIII-D. The possibility of avoiding the vertical instability in future tokamaks with highly elongated plasmas is discussed. Recent experiments have focused on utilizing this capability for axisymmetric control to construct plasma shapes optimized to increase the achievable beta. Operation near the axisymmetric stability limit allows an increase in the achieved normalized current Ip/aBT, where Ip is the total plasma current, a is the minor radius, and BT is the toroidal field. Based on stability calculations, an equilibrium was developed to achieve marginal stability simultaneously to axisymmetric, kink, and ballooning instabilities. In the experiment, the shape was altered to higher elongation during the high-beta phase as the current profile broadened. A record high beta for DIII-D of 11% was achieved. The high-beta phase of the discharge lasted 40 msec, approximately one confinement time.
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  • 10
    ISSN: 1089-7623
    Source: AIP Digital Archive
    Topics: Physics , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
    Notes: A digital–analog integrator has been developed for use with inductive magnetic sensors in long-pulse tokamaks. Continuous compensation of input offsets is accomplished by alternating analog-to-digital convertor samples from the sensor and a dummy load, while a RC network provides passive integration between samples. Typically a sampling rate of 10 kHz is used. In operational tests on the DIII-D tokamak, digital and analog integration of tokamak data show good agreement. The output drift error during a 1200 s integration interval corresponds to a few percent of the anticipated signal for poloidal field probes in International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor, and bench tests suggest that the error can be reduced further. © 1997 American Institute of Physics.
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