Astrophysically relevant radiation hydrodynamics experiment at the National Ignition Facility
The National Ignition Facility (NIF) is capable of creating new and novel high-energy-density (HED) systems relevant to astrophysics. Specifically, a system could be created that studies the effects of a radiative shock on a hydrodynamically unstable interface. These dynamics would be relevant to the early evolution after a core-collapse supernova of a red supergiant star. Prior to NIF, no HED facility had enough energy to perform this kind of experiment. The experimental target will include a 340 μm predominantly plastic ablator followed by a low-density SiO2 foam. The interface will have a specific, machined pattern that will seed hydrodynamic instabilities. The growth of the instabilities in a radiation-dominated environment will be observed. This experiment requires a ≥300 eV hohlraum drive and will be diagnosed using point projection pinhole radiography, which have both been recently demonstrated on NIF.
KeywordsLaboratory astrophysics National Ignition Facility Radiation hydrodynamics Hydrodynamic instability Radiative shocks
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