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Title: Assessment of Proton Deflectometry for Exploding Wire Experiments

This project provides the first demonstration of the application of proton deflectometry for the diagnosis of electromagnetic field topology and current-carrying regions in Z-pinch plasma experiments. Over the course of this project several milestones were achieved. High-energy proton beam generation was demonstrated on the short-pulse high-intensity Leopard laser, (10 Joules in ~350 femtoseconds, and the proton beam generation was shown to be reproducible. Next, protons were used to probe the electromagnetic field structure of short circuit loads in order to benchmark the two numerical codes, the resistive-magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) code, Gorgon, and the hybrid particle-in-cell code, LSP for the interpretation of results. Lastly, the proton deflectometry technique was used to map the magnetic field structure of pulsed-power-driven plasma loads including wires and supersonic jets formed with metallic foils. Good agreement between the modeling and experiments has been obtained. The demonstrated technique holds great promise to significantly improve the understanding of current flow and electromagnetic field topology in pulsed power driven high energy density plasmas. Proton probing with a high intensity laser was for the first time implemented in the presence of the harsh debris and x-ray producing z-pinch environment driven by a mega-ampere-scale pulsed-power machine. The intellectual merit of the programmore » was that it investigated strongly driven MHD systems and the influence of magnetic field topology on plasma evolution in pulsed power driven plasmas. The experimental program involved intense field-matter interaction in the generation of the proton probe, as well as the generation of plasma subjected to 1 MegaGauss scale magnetic fields. The computational aspect included two well-documented codes, in combination for the first time to provide accurate interpretation of the experimental results. The broader impact included the support of 2 graduate students, one at UCSD and one at NTF, who were exposed to both the experimental physics work, the MHD and PIC modeling of the system. A first generation college undergraduate student was employed to assist in experiments and data analysis throughout the project. Data resulting from the research program were broadly disseminated by publication in scientific journals, and presentation at international and national conferences and workshops.« less
  1. University of California San Diego
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
UCSD 2009-0512
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
University of California, San Diego
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE; USDOE Office of Science (SC)
Country of Publication:
United States
70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY High Energy Density Physics, Proton deflectometry. z-pinches