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May 10 – 15, 2021
Virtual Event
Europe/Vienna timezone
The Conference will be held virtually from 10-15 May 2021

Developing high performance RF heating scenarios on the WEST tokamak

May 13, 2021, 8:30 AM
Virtual Event

Virtual Event

Regular Poster Magnetic Fusion Experiments P5 Posters 5


Marc Goniche (CEA, IRFM)


WEST is an actively cooled full W tokamak aiming at power exhaust studies in long / steady-state pulses. WEST can operate in lower single null (USN), upper single null (USN) and double null configuration with an aspect ratio of 5-6. The lower divertor was partially made of ITER-like target in phase 1 (2016-2019), it will be fully made of ITER-like PFC in phase 2 starting autumn 2020 [1, 2]. For this purpose two lower hybrid current drive (LHCD) launchers and three ion cyclotron resonance heating (ICRH) antennas, all actively cooled, have been installed and commissioned.
In the 2019 campaign, the LHCD and ICRH coupled powers have both reached ~5MW/1s separately and 8.8MW/0.5s when combining the two RF systems. Long pulse operation was also carried out with LHCD (PLH=3.0MW) extending the pulse length to 55 seconds (Figure 1). The experiments were performed at high magnetic field (Bt=3.6-3.7T) in a large range of plasma configurations: X-point plasmas (R~2.5m, a~0.45m, kappa~1.3) in LSN and USN configuration, plasma current in the 0.3-0.7MA range (q95~3-6), electron density in the 2.5-8.5×1019 m-3 range (ne/nGW=0.3-0.8).
The fraction of radiated power Prad/Ptot is generally 50-55% but boronization of the vessel walls reduces this fraction to 30-40%. The effective charge Zeff is also significantly reduced to ~2 at high power. Tungsten is, in most cases, the major radiating species but no sign of tungsten accumulation in the core is observed in MHD-free discharges. Nitrogen injection during the early phase of the discharge is found to be beneficial for increasing the edge radiation and peaking the electron temperature. It results a weaker MHD activity and higher performance of the RF-heated plasma.
In L-mode, the stored energy, WMHD, increases according to the H96 L-mode scaling law up to 350kJ, L-H transition was observed, after fresh boronization, when combining 4MW of LHCD with 1MW of ICRH (Figure 2). It results a significant increase of the particle confinement time (30% increase of plasma density with gas injection turned off) but the plasma radiation increases leading to an oscillatory regime.
LHCD allows to reduce the loop voltage to ~0.1V up to ne=4x1019 m-3 indicating a current drive efficiency of 0.5-0.6×1019 A.W-1m-2 for 0.5MA discharges (Figure 1). Higher efficiency (~0.7-0.8×1019 A.W-1.
m-2) can be achieved after a fresh boronization or at lower plasma current (0.4MA) when the LH power deposition profile, deduced from the hard X-ray diagnostic, is more peaked.
Although the stored energy of ICRH-heated discharges increases accordingly with the confinement scaling law, moderate central electron heating is found in particular when ICRH is combined with LHCD. Tungsten sources from an ICRH antenna were investigated from visible spectroscopy [4, 5]. When the antenna is powered with 1MW, the tungsten flux (resp. sputtering yield) increased by a factor 10 (resp. 5) near the antenna mid-plane. However, the increment of fraction of radiated power is generally small when ICRH power is added on a LHCD discharge for well-tuned antennas [4].
In addition to the experimental results, simulations with the 1.5D METIS code [6] and the 3D C3PO/LUKE code [7] to verify the coherency between electron temperature, loop voltage, radiation , plasma composition are presented.
53s-long discharge (Bt/Ip=3.7T/0.4MA, USN configuration)
H-mode discharge (Bt/Ip=3.6T/0.5MA, LSN configuration)

Acknowledgements: This work has been carried out within the framework of the French Research Federation for Fusion Studies and of the EUROfusion Consortium.


1 J.Bucalossi and the WEST team, see, Fusion Eng.and Design 89 (2014) 907-912
2 C.Bourdelle et al., Nucl. Fusion 55, 063017 (2015)
[3] C.C.Klepper et al., 47th Conf. on Plasma Phys., Sitges, June 22-26 2020, invited paper
[4] J.Hillairet et al., this conference
[5] L.Colas et al., this conference
[6] J.F.Artaud et al., Nucl. Fusion 58 (2018) 105001 (25pp)
[7] Y.Peysson et J.Decker, FST, 65 (2014) 22

Country or International Organization France
Affiliation CEA, IRFM

Primary author

Marc Goniche (CEA, IRFM)


Prof. Jean-Francois Artaud (CEA, IRFM) Volodymyr Bobkov (Max-Planck-Institute for Plasma Physics) clarisse bourdelle (CEA, IRFM, F-13108 Saint-Paul-lez-Durance, France.) Jerome Bucalossi (CEA) Laurent COLAS (CEA, IRFM) Dr Corinne Desgranges (CEA-IRFM) Lena Delpech (CEA/IRFM) Dr Remi Dumont (CEA, France ) Annika Ekedahl (CEA, IRFM) Nicolas Fedorczak (CEA, IRFM, Saint Paul Lez Durance, France) Jeronimo Garcia (CEA IRFM) Dr Christophe Guillemaut (CEA, IRFM) James Paul Gunn (CEA Cadarache) Julien Hillairet (CEA/IRFM) Mr Jean-Michel Bernard (CEA, IRFM) Mr Pascal Devynck (CEA, IRFM) Mr Christophe Gil (CEA, IRFM) C Christopher Klepper (Oak Ridge National Laboratory) E Lerche (LPP-ERM/KMS, Association EUROFUSION-Belgian State, TEC partner, Brussels, Belgium;) Mr Gilles Lombard (CEA, IRFM) PATRICK MAGET (CEA) Dr Pierre Manas (CEA) Didier Mazon (CEA Cadarache) Mr Olivier Meyer (CEA, IRFM) Dr Jorge MORALES (IRFM, CEA Cadarache) Philippe Moreau (CEA, IRFM, France) Remy Nouailletas (CEA/IRFM) Mr Mathieu PERET (IRFM, CEA Cadarache) Yves Peysson (CEA) Xavier Regal-Mezin (CEA/IRFM) Dr Guillaume Urbanczyk (Key Laboratory of Optoelectronic Devices and Systems, College of Physics and Optoelectronic Engineering, Shenzhen University) laure vermare (CNRS, LPP Ecole Polytechnique) Dr Didier VEZINET (IRFM, CEA Cadarache) Gregory Wallace (MIT Plasma Science and Fusion Center) WEST team

Presentation materials