First experimental tests of a new small angle slot divertor on DIII-D

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Abstract

A new small angle slot (SAS) divertor concept has been developed to enhance neutral cooling across the divertor target by coupling a closed slot structure with appropriate target shaping. Initial tests on DIII-D find a strong interplay between such anticipated 'SAS' effects and cross-field drifts, favouring operation with the ion B × ∇B drift away from the X-point, as currently employed for advanced tokamaks. This offers the following key improvements relative to DIII-D's open lower divertor or partially-closed upper divertor: (i) SAS allows for transition to low temperature moderately detached divertor conditions with T e ≲ 10 eV at very low main plasma densities, lower than are usually attainable at all in DIII-D high confinement (H-mode) plasmas as used in these tests; (ii) Pedestal performance and core confinement are significantly improved with SAS. The final confinement collapse associated with the onset of X-point MARFE (multifaceted asymmetric radiation from the edge) following deep detachment occurs at significantly higher pedestal densities, thus widening the window of H-mode operation compatible with a dissipative divertor. For operation with the ion B × ∇B drift toward the X-point, the divertor plasma transitions to a bifurcative detached state at much higher densities, similar to other divertor configurations in DIII-D. These results highlight the strong interplay between divertor closure and drifts, and point to an interesting divertor optimization path to explore that offers potential for future fusion reactors.

Original languageEnglish
Article number086054
JournalNuclear Fusion
Volume59
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 9 Jul 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • advanced divertor
  • DIII-D
  • plasma-material interactions
  • tokamak

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