Generation and confinement of hot ions and electrons in a reversed-field pinch plasma

B. E. Chapman, A. F. Almagri, J. K. Anderson, D. L. Brower, K. J. Caspary, D. J. Clayton, D. Craig, D. J. Den Hartog, W. X. Ding, D. A. Ennis, G. Fiksel, S. Gangadhara, S. Kumar, R. M. Magee, R. O'Connell, E. Parke, Stewart C. Prager, J. A. Reusch, J. S. Sarff, H. D. StephensY. M. Yang

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16 Scopus citations


By manipulating magnetic reconnection in Madison Symmetric Torus (MST) discharges, we have generated and confined for the first time a reversedfield pinch (RFP) plasma with an ion temperature >1 keV and an electron temperature of 2 keV. This is achieved at a toroidal plasma current of about 0.5 MA, approaching MST's present maximum. The manipulation begins with intensification of discrete magnetic reconnection events, causing the ion temperature to increase to several kiloelectronvolts. The reconnection is then quickly suppressed with inductive current profile control, leading to capture of a portion of the added ion heat with improved ion energy confinement. Electron energy confinement is simultaneously improved, leading to a rapid ohmically driven increase in the electron temperature. A steep electron temperature gradient emerges in the outer region of the plasma, with a local thermal diffusivity of about 2m2s-1. The global energy confinement time reaches 12 ms, the largest value yet achieved in the RFP and which is roughly comparable to the H-mode scaling prediction for a tokamak with the same plasma current, density, heating power, size and shape.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number124048
JournalPlasma Physics and Controlled Fusion
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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