Progress towards and applications of small, steady-state, clean fusion reactors

TYPEPlasma Seminar
Speaker:Prof. Samuel Cohen
Affiliation:Princeton University, Plasma Physics Laboratory
Organizer:Prof. Yakov Krasik
Date:19.10.2015
Time:14:30
Location:Lidow 620
Abstract: Progress towards and applications of small, steady-state, clean fusion reactors
In the last few years, remarkable experimental progress has been made on a type of high-b plasma device known as the field-reversed configuration (FRC). Confinement times have been increased to near-classical values and the stability times attained are 105 times longer than predicted by MHD theory. Based on these advances, a number of groups have proposed upgrading their devices to achieve reactor-relevant parameters to produce net fusion power. In this talk, I will present recent experimental findings, numerical simulations, and analytic results on a single type of FRC, one heated by a radio-frequency technique having a particular symmetry, one predicted to improve energy confinement, drive current, and heat both ions and electrons. The benefits and limitations arising from the use of the aneutronic fuel mixture D-3He will be discussed. One unique application for this type of reactor is as a rocket engine for critical missions within and outside the solar system.