Nuclear Fusion pp 237-343 | Cite as

Plasma Heating in Magnetic Fusion Devices

  • Edward Morse
Part of the Graduate Texts in Physics book series (GTP)


The history of magnetic confinement plasma heating methods is given. The difficulty in using ohmic heating to heat reactor-grade plasmas to thermonuclear temperatures is shown. Neutral beam injection (NBI) techniques are described from the standpoint of the atomic physics of neutralization, accelerator current density limits (the Child-Langmuir law), and ion optics. The need for negative ion beams for penetration of large plasmas is shown. The current design of the ITER NBI system is shown. Radiofrequency (RF) heating approaches are described, with the details of RF wave propagation shown through the cold-plasma dispersion relation, accessibility and the CMA diagram, and then the warm-plasma dispersion relations. Ray tracing techniques are described, along with a discussion of tunneling and mode conversion. Nonlinear effects leading to heating and current drive at lower hybrid (LH) and electron cyclotron resonance frequency (ECRF) are discussed. Ion cyclotron range of frequency (ICRF) systems are discussed from an accessibility viewpoint and from the antenna design viewpoint. The technology required for these frequency bands, including the power sources such as tetrodes (ICRF), klystrons (LH), gyrotrons and quasioptical devices (ECRF), and the transmission systems including coaxial cables (ICRF), waveguides (LH and ECRF), and quasioptical transmission (ECRF) are described, with emphasis on the current ITER RF heating and current drive systems.


Ohmic heating Neutral beam injection (NBI) Charge exchange (NBI) Child-Langmuir law Negative ions RF heating Cold-plasma dispersion relation CMA diagram RF accessibility Warm-plasma dispersion relation Ion cyclotron heating Lower hybrid heating Lower hybrid current drive Electron cyclotron heating Electron cyclotron current drive RF transmission lines Waveguides Tetrodes Klystrons Gyrotrons Quasioptical transmission 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Edward Morse
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Nuclear EngineeringUniversity of California, BerkeleyBerkeleyUSA

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