A high-resolution, vertically viewing far-infrared polarimeter- interferometer system is currently used on the Madison symmetric torus (MST) reversed-field pinch (RFP) to measure the plasma electron density and toroidal current density via Faraday rotation. In this article, we propose a scheme to measure the well-known Fizeau effect, whereby through modest modification of the existing apparatus, the line-integrated poloidal current density can also be directly measured. This parameter is important, since the RFP toroidal magnetic field is largely determined by currents flowing within the plasma. The Fizeau effect is a phase shift of an electromagnetic wave associated with movement of a dielectric medium. This motion can be related directly to the plasma electron current. Determining the Fizeau effect involves measurement of the phase shift between two collinear, orthogonally polarized, counterpropagating laser beams. Estimates indicate a phase shift of ∼2° is expected for typical MST parameters, well within the existing system resolution.
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