Transport analysis, ion-scale turbulence measurements, and initial linear and nonlinear gyrokinetic simulations are reported for a transport validation study based on low aspect ratio NSTX-U L-mode discharges. The relatively long, stationary L-modes enabled by the upgraded centerstack provide a more ideal target for transport validation studies that were not available during NSTX operation. Transport analysis shows that anomalous electron transport dominates energy loss while ion thermal transport is well described by neoclassical theory. Linear gyrokinetic GYRO analysis predicts that ion temperature gradient (ITG) modes are unstable around normalized radii $\rho$=0.6-0.8, although $E\timesB$ shearing rates are larger than the linear growth rates over much of that region. Deeper in the core ($\rho$=0.4-0.6), electromagnetic microtearing modes (MTM) are unstable as a consequence of the relatively high beta and collisionality in these particular discharges. Consistent with the linear analysis, local, nonlinear ion-scale GYRO simulations predict strong ITG transport at $\rho$=0.76, whereas electromagnetic MTM transport is important at $\rho$=0.47. The prediction of ion-scale turbulence is consistent with 2D beam emission spectroscopy (BES) that measures the presence of broadband ion-scale fluctuations. Interestingly, the BES measurements also indicate the presence of bi-modal poloidal phase velocity propagation that could be indicative of two different turbulence types. However, in the region between ($\rho$=0.56, 0.66), ion-scale simulations are strongly suppressed by the locally large $E\timesB$ shear. Instead, electron temperature gradient (ETG) turbulence simulations predict substantial transport, illustrating electron-scale contributions can be important in low aspect ratio L-modes, similar to recent analysis at conventional aspect ratio. However, agreement within experimental uncertainties has not been demonstrated, which requires additional simulations to test parametric sensitivities. The potential need to include profile-variation effects (due to the relatively large value of $\rho_*$=$\rho_i$/a at low aspect ratio), including electromagnetic and possibly multi-scale effects, is also discussed.
Force-driven parallel shear flow in a spatially periodic domain is shown to be linearly unstable
with respect to both the Reynolds number and the domain aspect ratio. This finding is confirmed
by computer simulations, and a simple expression is derived to determine stable flow conditions.
Periodic extensions of Couette and Poiseuille flows are unstable at Reynolds numbers two orders
of magnitude smaller than their aperiodic equivalents because the periodic boundaries impose
fundamentally different constraints. This instability has important implications for designing computational models of nonlinear dynamic processes with periodicity.
The data are 4554 light curves derived from images taken of the globular cluster M4 by the Kepler space telescope during the K2 portion of its mission, specifically during Campaign 2 of that mission, which occurred in 2014. A total of 3856 images were taken over approximately three months at a cadence of approximately half an hour. The purpose of these observations was to find stars and other objects that vary in brightness over time --- variable stars. Also included is a table with associated information for each of the 4554 objects and their light curves.
Since 1850 the concentration of atmospheric methane (CH4), a potent greenhouse gas, has more than doubled. Recent studies suggest that emission inventories may be missing sources and underestimating emissions. To investigate whether offshore oil and gas platforms leak CH4 during normal operation, we measured CH4 mole fractions around eight oil and gas production platforms in the North Sea which were neither flaring gas nor off-loading oil. We use the measurements from summer 2017, along with meteorological data, in a Gaussian plume model to estimate CH4 emissions from each platform. We find CH4 mole fractions of between 11 and 370 ppb above background concentrations downwind of the platforms measured, corresponding to a median CH4 emission of 6.8 g CH4 s-1 for each platform, with a range of 2.9 to 22.3 g CH4 s-1. When matched to production records, during our measurements individual platforms lost between 0.04% and 1.4% of gas produced with a median loss of 0.23%. When the measured platforms are considered collectively, (i.e. the sum of platforms’ emission fluxes weighted by the sum of the platforms’ production), we estimate the CH4 loss to be 0.19% of gas production. These estimates are substantially higher than the emissions most recently reported to the National Atmospheric Emission Inventory (NAEI) for total CH4 loss from United Kingdom platforms in the North Sea. The NAEI reports CH4 losses from the offshore oil and gas platforms we measured to be 0.13% of gas production, with most of their emissions coming from gas flaring and offshore oil loading, neither of which were taking place at the time of our measurements. All oil and gas platforms we observed were found to leak CH4 during normal operation and much of this leakage has not been included in UK emission inventories. Further research is required to accurately determine total CH4 leakage from all offshore oil and gas operations and to properly include the leakage in national and international emission inventories.
The Electromagnetic Particle Injector (EPI) concept is advanced through the simulation of ablatant deposition into ITER H-mode discharges with calculations showing penetration past the H-mode pedestal for a range of injection velocities and granule sizes concurrent with the requirements of disruption mitigation. As discharge stored energy increases in future fusion devices such as ITER, control and handling of disruption events becomes a critical issue. An unmitigated disruption could lead to failure of the plasma facing components resulting in financially and politically costly repairs. Methods to facilitate the quench of an unstable high current discharge are required. With the onset warning time for some ITER disruption events estimated to be less than 10 ms, a disruption mitigation system needs to be considered which operates at injection speeds greater than gaseous sound speeds. Such an actuator could then serve as a means to augment presently planned pneumatic injection systems. The EPI uses a rail gun concept whereby a radiative payload is delivered into the discharge by means of the JxB forces generated by an external current pulse, allowing for injection velocities in excess of 1 km/s. The present status of the EPI project is outlined, including the addition of boost magnetic coils. These coils augment the self-generated rail gun magnetic field and thus provide a more efficient acceleration of the payload. The coils and the holder designed to constrain them have been modelled with the ANSYS code to ensure structural integrity through the range of operational coil cu
Schwartz, Jacob; Emdee, Eric; Goldston, Robert; Jaworski, Michael
The lithium vapor box divertor is a potential solution for power exhaust in toroidal confinement devices. The divertor plasma interacts with a localized, dense cloud of lithium vapor, leading to volumetric radiation, cooling, recombination, and detachment. To minimize contamination of the core plasma, lithium vapor is condensed on cool (300°C to 400°C) baffles upstream of the detachment point. Before implementing this in a toroidal plasma device with a slot divertor geometry, we consider an experiment with a scaled baffled-pipe geometry in the high-power linear plasma device Magnum-PSI. Three 15 cm-scale open cylinders joined by 6 cm diameter ‘nozzles’ are positioned on the plasma beam axis upstream of a target. The central box may be loaded with several tens of grams of lithium, which can be evaporated at 650°C to produce a vapor predicted, using a simple plasma-neutral interaction model, to be dense enough to cause volumetric detachment in the plasma. The power delivered to the target and box walls as measured by increases in their temperatures after a 10 s plasma pulse can be compared to determine the effectiveness of the vapor in detaching the plasma. Direct Simulation Monte Carlo simulations are performed to estimate the flow rates of lithium vapor between the boxes and to estimate the trapping of H2 delivered by the plasma in the boxes, which could inadvertently lead to detachment. Details of the geometry, simulations, and possible diagnostic techniques are presented.
A reduced semi-empirical model using time-dependent axisymmetric vacuum field calculations is used to develop the prefill and feed-forward coil current targets required for reliable direct induction (DI) startup on the new MA-class spherical tokamaks, MAST-U and NSTX-U. The calculations are constrained by operational limits unique to each device, such as the geometry of the conductive elements and active coils, power supply specifications and coil heating and stress limits. The calculations are also constrained by semi-empirical models for sufficient breakdown, current drive, equilibrium and stability of the plasma developed from a shared database. A large database of DI startup on NSTX and NSTX-U is leveraged to quantify the requirements for achieving a reliable breakdown (Ip ~ 20 kA). It is observed that without pre-ionization, STs access the large E/P regime at modest loop voltage (Vloop) where the electrons in the weakly ionized plasma are continually accelerating along the open field lines. This ensures a rapid (order millisecond) breakdown of the neutral gas, even without pre-ionization or high-quality field nulls. The timescale of the initial increase in Ip on NSTX is reproduced in the reduced model provided a mechanism for impeding the applied electric field is included. Most discharges that fail in the startup phase are due to an inconsistency in the evolution of the plasma current (Ip) and equilibrium field or loss of vertical stability during the burn-through phase. The requirements for the self-consistent evolution of the fields in the weakly and full-ionized plasma states are derived from demonstrated DI startup on NSTX, NSTX-U and MAST. The predictive calculations completed for MAST-U and NSTX-U illustrate that the maximum Ip ramp rate (dIp/dt) in the early startup phase is limited by the voltage limits on the poloidal field coils on MAST-U and passive vertical stability on NSTX-U.
Berryman, Eleanor J.; Winey, J. M.; Gupta, Yogendra M.; Duffy, Thomas S.
Stishovite (rutile-type SiO2) is the archetype of dense silicates and may occur in post-garnet eclogitic rocks at lower-mantle conditions. Sound velocities in stishovite are fundamental to understanding its mechanical and thermodynamic behavior at high pressure and temperature. Here, we use plate-impact experiments combined with velocity interferometry to determine the stress, density, and longitudinal sound speed in stishovite formed during shock compression of fused silica at 44 GPa and above. The measured sound speeds range from 12.3(8) km/s at 43.8(8) GPa to 9.8(4) km/s at 72.7(11) GPa. The decrease observed at 64 GPa reacts a decrease in the shear modulus of stishovite, likely due to the onset of melting. By 72 GPa, the measured sound speed agrees with the theoretical bulk sound speed indicating loss of all shear stiffness due to complete melting. Our sound velocity results provide direct evidence for shock-induced melting, in agreement with previous pyrometry data.
In 2017, seven members of the Archive-It Mid-Atlantic Users Group (AITMA) conducted a study of 14 subjects representative of their stakeholder populations to assess the usability of Archive-It, a web archiving subscription service of the Internet Archive. While Archive-It is the most widely-used tool for web archiving, little is known about how users interact with the service. This study intended to teach us what users expect from web archives, which exist as another form of archival material. End-user subjects executed four search tasks using the public Archive-It interface and the Wayback Machine to access archived information on websites from the facilitators’ own harvested collections and provide feedback about their experiences. The tasks were designed to have straightforward pass or fail outcomes, and the facilitators took notes on the subjects’ behavior and commentary during the sessions. Overall, participants reported mildly positive impressions of Archive-It public user interface based on their session. The study identified several key areas of improvement for the Archive-It service pertaining to metadata options, terminology display, indexing of dates, and the site’s search box.
Spontaneous multi-keV electron generation in a low-RF-power axisymmetric mirror machine
X-ray emission shows the existence of multi-keV electrons in low-temperature, low-power, capacitively-coupled RF-heated magnetic-mirror plasmas that also contain a warm (300 eV) minority electron population. Though these warm electrons are initially passing particles, we suggest that collisionless scattering -- mu non-conservation in the static vacuum field -- is responsible for a minority of them to persist in the mirror cell for thousands of transits during which time a fraction are energized to a characteristic temperature of 3 keV, with some electrons reaching energies above 30 keV. A heuristic model of the heating by a Fermi-acceleration-like mechanism is presented, with mu non-conservation in the static vacuum field as an essential feature.
Experiments and predictions of surface wave damping in liquid metal due to a surface aligned magnetic field and externally regulated j × B force are presented. Fast-flowing, liquid-metal plasma facing components (LM-PFCs) are a proposed alternative to solid PFCs that are unable to handle the high heat flux, thermal stresses, and radiation damage in a tokamak. The significant technical challenges associated with LM-PFCs compared to solid PFCs are justified by greater heat flux management, self-healing properties, and reduced particle recycling. However, undesirable engineering challenges such as evaporation and splashing of the liquid metal introduce excessive impurities into the plasma and degrade plasma performance. Evaporation may be avoided through high-speed flow that limits temperature rise of the liquid metal by reducing heat flux exposure time, but as flow speed increases the surface may become more turbulent and prone to splashing and uneven surfaces. Wave damping is one mechanism that reduces surface disturbance and thus the chances of liquid metal impurity introduction into the plasma. Experiments on the Liquid Metal eXperiment Upgrade (LMX-U) examined damping under the influence of transverse magnetic fields and vertically directed Lorentz force.
An optimization approach that incorporates the predictive transport code TRANSP is proposed for tokamak scenario development. Optimization methods are often employed to develop open-loop control strategies to aid access to high performance tokamak scenarios. In general, the optimization approaches use control-oriented models, i.e. models that are reduced in complexity and prediction accuracy as compared to physics-oriented transport codes such as TRANSP. In the presented approach, an optimization procedure using the TRANSP code to simulate the tokamak plasma is considered for improved predictive capabilities. As a test case, the neutral beam injection (NBI) power is optimized to develop a control strategy that maximizes the non-inductive current fraction during the ramp-up phase for NSTX-U. Simulation studies towards the achievement of non-inductive ramp up in NSTX-U have already been carried out with the TRANSP code. The optimization-based approach proposed in this work is used to maximize the non-inductive current fraction during ramp-up in NSTX-U, demonstrating that the scenario development task can be automated. An additional test case considers optimization of the current ramp rate in DIII-D for obtaining a stationary plasma characterized by
a flat loop voltage profile in the flattop phase.
Active control of the toroidal current density profile is critical for the upgraded National Spherical Torus eXperiment device (NSTX-U) to maintain operation at the desired high-performance, MHD-stable, plasma regime. Initial efforts towards current density profile control have led to the development of a control-oriented, physics-based, plasma-response model, which combines the magnetic diffusion equation with empirical correlations for the kinetic profiles and the non-inductive current sources. The developed control-oriented model has been successfully tailored to the NSTX-U geometry and actuators. Moreover, a series of efforts have been made towards the design of model-based controllers, including a linear-quadratic-integral optimal control strategy that can regulate the current density profile around a prescribed target profile while rejecting disturbances. In this work, the tracking performance of the proposed current-profile optimal controller is tested in numerical simulations based on the physics-oriented code TRANSP. These high-fidelity closed-loop simulations, which are a critical step before experimental implementation and testing, are enabled by a flexible framework recently
developed to perform feedback control design and simulation in TRANSP.
Hvasta, M. G.; Dudt, D.; Fisher, A. E.; Kolemen, E.
A 'weighted magnetic bearing' has been developed to improve the performance of
rotating Lorentz-force flowmeters (RLFFs). Experiments have shown that the new bearing
reduces frictional losses within a double-sided, disc-style RLFF to negligible levels.
Operating such an RLFF under 'frictionless' conditions provides two major benefits.
First, the steady-state velocity of the RLFF magnets matches the average velocity of the
flowing liquid at low flow rates. This enables an RLFF to make accurate volumetric flow
measurements without any calibration or prior knowledge of the fluid properties. Second,
due to minimized frictional losses, an RLFF is able to measure low flow rates that cannot
be detected when conventional, high-friction bearings are used. This paper provides a
brief background on RLFFs, gives a detailed description of weighted magnetic bearings,
and compares experimental RLFF data to measurements taken with a commercially available
Geochemical and geomechanical perturbations of the subsurface caused by the injection of fluids present the risk of leakage and seismicity. This study investigated how flow of acidic fluids affects hydraulic and frictional properties of fractures using experiments with 3.8 cm-long specimens of Eagle Ford shale, a laminated shale with carbonate-rich strata. In low-pressure flow cells, one set of samples was exposed to an acidic brine and another set was exposed to a neutral brine. X-ray computed tomography and x-ray fluorescence analysis revealed that samples exposed to the acidic brine were calcite-depleted and had developed a porous altered layer, while the other set showed little evidence of alteration. After reaction, samples were compacted and sheared in a triaxial cell that supplied normal stress and differential pore pressure at prescribed sliding velocities, independently measuring friction and permeability. During the initial compaction, the porous altered layer collapsed into fine particles that filled the fracture aperture. This effectively impeded flow and sealed the fracture, resulting in a decrease in fracture permeability by 1 to 2 orders of magnitude relative to the compressed unaltered fractures. During shear, the collapsed layer of fine-grained particles prevented the formation of interlocking micro-asperities resulting in lower frictional strength. With regard to subsurface risks, this study showcases how coupled geochemical and geomechanical processes could favorably seal fractures to inhibit leakage, but also could increase the likelihood of induced seismicity. These findings have important implications for geological carbon sequestration, pressurized fluid energy storage, geothermal energy, and other subsurface technologies.
Plasma-facing components (PFC's) made from solid materials may not be able to withstand the large heat and particle fluxes that will be produced within next-generation fusion reactors. To address the shortcomings of solid PFC's, a variety of liquid-metal (LM) PFC concepts have been proposed. Many of the suggested LM-PFC designs rely on electromagnetic restraint (Lorentz force) to keep free-surface, liquid-metal flows adhered to the interior surfaces of a fusion reactor. However, there is very little, if any, experimental data demonstrating that free-surface, LM-PFC's can actually be electromagnetically controlled. Therefore, in this study, electrical currents were injected into a free-surface liquid-metal that was flowing through a uniform magnetic field. The resultant Lorentz force generated within the liquid-metal affected the velocity and depth of the flow in a controllable manner that closely matched theoretical predictions. These results show the promise of electromagnetic control for LM-PFC's and suggest that electromagnetic control could be further developed to adjust liquid-metal nozzle output, prevent splashing within a tokamak, and alter heat transfer properties for a wide-range of liquid-metal systems.
Schwartz, J. A.; Emdee, E. D.; Jaworski, M. A; Goldston, R. J.
The lithium vapor box divertor is a concept for handling the extreme divertor heat fluxes in magnetic fusion devices. In a baffled slot divertor, plasma interacts with a dense cloud of Li vapor which radiates and cools the plasma, leading to recombination and detachment. Before testing on a tokamak the concept should be validated: we plan to study detachment and heat redistribution by a Li vapor cloud in laboratory experiments.
Mass changes and temperatures are measured to validate a Direct Simulation Monte Carlo model of neutral Li.
The initial experiment involves a 5 cm diameter steel box containing 10g of Li held at 650 degrees C as vapor flows out a wide nozzle into a similarly-sized box at a lower temperature. Diagnosis is made challenging by the required material compatibility with lithium vapor. Vapor pressure is a steep function of temperature, so to validate mass flow models to within 10%, absolute temperature to within 4.5K is required. The apparatus is designed to be used with an analytical balance to determine mass transport. Details of the apparatus and methods of temperature and mass flow measurements are presented.
An electron beam is detected by a 1D floating potential probe array in a relatively high density (10e12 − 10e13 cm−3) and low temperature (∼ 5 eV) plasma of the Magnetic Reconnection Experiment (MRX). Clear perturbations in the floating potential profile by the electron beam are observed. Based on the floating potential profile and a current balance equation to the probe array tips, the effective width of the electron beam is determined, from which we determine the radial and toroidal beam current density profiles. After the profile of the electron beam is specified from the measured beam current, we demonstrate the consistency of the current balance equation and the location of the perturbation is also in agreement with field line mapping. No significant broadening of the electron beam is observed after the beam propagates for tens of centimeters through the high density plasma. These results prove that the field line mapping is, in principle, possible in high density plasmas.
The injection of impurity granules into fusion research discharges can serve
as a catalyst for ELM events. For sufficiently low ELM frequencies, and granule
sizes above a threshold, this can result in full control of the ELM cycle,
referred to as ELM pacing. For this research, we extend the investigation
to conditions where the natural ELM frequency is too high for ELM pacing to
be realized. Utilizing multiple sizes of lithium granules and classifying their
effects by granule size, we demonstrate that ELM mitigation through frequency
multiplication can be used at ELM triggering rates that nominally make ELM pacing
unrealizable. We find that above a size threshold, injected granules promptly
trigger ELMs and commensurately enhance the ELM frequency . Below this threshold
size, injection of an individual granule does not always lead to the prompt
triggering of an ELM; however, collective ablation in the edge pedestal region
does enhance the ELM frequency. Specifically, Li granules too small to individually
trigger ELMs were injected into EAST H-mode discharges at frequencies up to 2.3 kHz;
collectively the granules were observed to enhance the natural ELM frequency up to
620 Hz, resulting in a ~2.4x multiplication of the natural ELM frequency and a 50%
decrease of the ELM size.