Study of fast-ion losses in experiments on neutral beam injection on the Globus-M spherical tokamak
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- Chernyshev, F.V., Afanasyev, V.I., Gusev, V.K. et al. Plasma Phys. Rep. (2011) 37: 553. doi:10.1134/S1063780X11060201
The paper presents a review of the main results on the heating of plasma ions and behavior of fast ions in experiments on neutral beam injection (NBI) carried out in 2003–2010 on the Globus-M spherical tokamak. It is noticed that, along with significant success achieved in NBI plasma heating, there is experimental evidence indicating significant losses of the power injected into the plasma. Most probably, the power is lost due to so-called first-orbit losses, i.e., losses of fast ions that are produced in plasma after ionization of beam atoms and occur in unconfined trajectories. Until recently, the absence of appropriate diagnostic equipment did not allow one to verify this hypothesis. The use of the ACORD-M charge-exchange analyzer directed tangentially to the plasma column made it possible to measure the spectra of fast ions slowed down in plasma and confirm the assumption on the presence of substantial orbit losses of fast particles (∼25–50% of the beam power). In addition to the review of the experimental results, the paper presents analysis of orbit losses on the basis of 3D simulations of fast-ion trajectories in plasma. The results of experiments on studying the influence of the magnitude of the tokamak magnetic field on the confinement of fast ions are also presented. Along with computer simulations, these experiments made it possible to formulate recommendations on the reduction of orbit losses in the Globus-M tokamak.