The first measurements of long wavelength (kyρs < 0.3) electron temperature fluctuations in Alcator C-Mod made with a new correlation electron cyclotron emission diagnostic support a long-standing hypothesis regarding the confinement transition from linear ohmic confinement (LOC) to saturated ohmic confinement (SOC). Electron temperature fluctuations decrease significantly (∼40%) crossing from LOC to SOC, consistent with a change from trapped electron mode (TEM) turbulence domination to ion temperature gradient (ITG) turbulence as the density is increased. Linear stability analysis performed with the GYRO code (Candy and Waltz 2003 J. Comput. Phys. 186 545) shows that TEMs are dominant for long wavelength turbulence in the LOC regime and ITG modes are dominant in the SOC regime at the radial location (ρ ∼ 0.8) where the changes in electron temperature fluctuations are measured. In contrast, deeper in the core (ρ < 0.8), linear stability analysis indicates that ITG modes remain dominant across the LOC/SOC transition. This radial variation suggests that the robust global changes in confinement of energy and momentum occurring across the LOC/SOC transition are correlated to local changes in the dominant turbulent mode near the edge.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics
- Condensed Matter Physics