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Title: Development of a cryogenically cooled platform for the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Program [Development of a cryogenically-cooled platform for the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Concept]

Abstract

A cryogenically cooled hardware platform has been developed and commissioned on the Z Facility at Sandia National Laboratories in support of the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Program. MagLIF is a magneto-inertial fusion concept that employs a magnetically imploded metallic tube (liner) to compress and inertially confine premagnetized and preheated fusion fuel. The fuel is preheated using a ~2 kJ laser that must pass through a ~1.5-3.5-μm-thick polyimide “window” at the target’s laser entrance hole (LEH). As the terawatt-class laser interacts with the dense window, laser plasma instabilities (LPIs) can develop, which reduce the preheat energy delivered to the fuel, initiate fuel contamination, and degrade target performance. Cryogenically cooled targets increase the parameter space accessible to MagLIF target designs by allowing nearly 10 times thinner windows to be used for any accessible gas density. Thinner LEH windows reduce the deleterious effects of difficult to model LPIs. The Z Facility’s cryogenic infrastructure has been significantly altered to enable compatibility with the premagnetization and fuel preheat stages of MagLIF. The MagLIF cryostat brings the liquid helium coolant directly to the target via an electrically resistive conduit. This design maximizes cooling power while allowing rapid diffusion of the axial magnetic field supplied bymore » external Helmholtz-like coils. A variety of techniques have been developed to mitigate the accumulation of ice from vacuum chamber contaminants on the cooled LEH window, as even a few hundred nanometers of ice would impact laser energy coupling to the fuel region. Here, the MagLIF cryostat has demonstrated compatibility with the premagnetization and preheat stages of MagLIF and the ability to cool targets to liquid deuterium temperatures in approximately 5 min.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [3];  [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [1];  [1]
  1. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
  2. Kansas City National Security Campus, Kansas City, MO (United States)
  3. Univ. of Rochester, Rochester, NY (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
1406364
Report Number(s):
SAND-2017-11047J
Journal ID: ISSN 0034-6748; RSINAK; 657773; TRN: US1703037
Grant/Contract Number:
AC04-94AL85000
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Review of Scientific Instruments
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 88; Journal Issue: 9; Journal ID: ISSN 0034-6748
Publisher:
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
46 INSTRUMENTATION RELATED TO NUCLEAR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY; 70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY

Citation Formats

Awe, T. J., Shelton, K. P., Sefkow, A. B., Lamppa, D. C., Baker, J. L., Rovang, D. C., and Robertson, G. K. Development of a cryogenically cooled platform for the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Program [Development of a cryogenically-cooled platform for the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Concept]. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1063/1.4986041.
Awe, T. J., Shelton, K. P., Sefkow, A. B., Lamppa, D. C., Baker, J. L., Rovang, D. C., & Robertson, G. K. Development of a cryogenically cooled platform for the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Program [Development of a cryogenically-cooled platform for the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Concept]. United States. doi:10.1063/1.4986041.
Awe, T. J., Shelton, K. P., Sefkow, A. B., Lamppa, D. C., Baker, J. L., Rovang, D. C., and Robertson, G. K. Mon . "Development of a cryogenically cooled platform for the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Program [Development of a cryogenically-cooled platform for the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Concept]". United States. doi:10.1063/1.4986041.
@article{osti_1406364,
title = {Development of a cryogenically cooled platform for the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Program [Development of a cryogenically-cooled platform for the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Concept]},
author = {Awe, T. J. and Shelton, K. P. and Sefkow, A. B. and Lamppa, D. C. and Baker, J. L. and Rovang, D. C. and Robertson, G. K.},
abstractNote = {A cryogenically cooled hardware platform has been developed and commissioned on the Z Facility at Sandia National Laboratories in support of the Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion (MagLIF) Program. MagLIF is a magneto-inertial fusion concept that employs a magnetically imploded metallic tube (liner) to compress and inertially confine premagnetized and preheated fusion fuel. The fuel is preheated using a ~2 kJ laser that must pass through a ~1.5-3.5-μm-thick polyimide “window” at the target’s laser entrance hole (LEH). As the terawatt-class laser interacts with the dense window, laser plasma instabilities (LPIs) can develop, which reduce the preheat energy delivered to the fuel, initiate fuel contamination, and degrade target performance. Cryogenically cooled targets increase the parameter space accessible to MagLIF target designs by allowing nearly 10 times thinner windows to be used for any accessible gas density. Thinner LEH windows reduce the deleterious effects of difficult to model LPIs. The Z Facility’s cryogenic infrastructure has been significantly altered to enable compatibility with the premagnetization and fuel preheat stages of MagLIF. The MagLIF cryostat brings the liquid helium coolant directly to the target via an electrically resistive conduit. This design maximizes cooling power while allowing rapid diffusion of the axial magnetic field supplied by external Helmholtz-like coils. A variety of techniques have been developed to mitigate the accumulation of ice from vacuum chamber contaminants on the cooled LEH window, as even a few hundred nanometers of ice would impact laser energy coupling to the fuel region. Here, the MagLIF cryostat has demonstrated compatibility with the premagnetization and preheat stages of MagLIF and the ability to cool targets to liquid deuterium temperatures in approximately 5 min.},
doi = {10.1063/1.4986041},
journal = {Review of Scientific Instruments},
number = 9,
volume = 88,
place = {United States},
year = {Mon Sep 25 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Mon Sep 25 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

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  • The recently proposed magnetized liner inertial fusion approach to a Z-pinch driven fusion [Slutz et al., Phys. Plasmas17, 056303 (2010)] is based on the use of an axial magnetic field to provide plasma thermal insulation from the walls of the imploding liner. The characteristic plasma transport regimes in the proposed approach cover parameter domains that have not been studied yet in either magnetic confinement or inertial confinement experiments. In this article, an analysis is presented of the scalability of the key physical processes that determine the plasma confinement. The dimensionless scaling parameters are identified and conclusion is drawn that themore » plasma behavior in scaled-down experiments can correctly represent the full-scale plasma, provided these parameters are approximately the same in two systems. Furthermore, this observation is important in that smaller-scale experiments typically have better diagnostic access and more experiments per year are possible.« less
  • Here, the magnetized liner inertial fusion (MagLIF) experimental campaign conducted at the University of Rochester’s Laboratory for Laser Energetics (LLE) has evolved significantly since its start in 2014. Scientific requirements and OMEGA EP system technology both have progressed, resulting in necessary and available updates to the target design. These include, but are not limited to: optimizing target dimensions and aspect ratios to maximize survival at desired pressures; coating target components to enhance physics diagnosis; precision-machining diagnostic windows along the axis of the target; improving fiducial placement reproducibility and reducing subsequent assembly time by 50%; and implementing gas-pressure transducers on themore » targets. In addition, target fabrication techniques have changed and improved, allowing for simpler target reproducibility and decreased assembly time. To date, eleven variations of targets have been fabricated, with successful target fielding ranging from 1 to 20atm internal pressure and a maximum survivability of 33atm.« less
  • The standard approaches to inertial confinement fusion (ICF) rely on implosion velocities greater than 300 km/s and spherical convergence to achieve the high fuel temperatures (T > 4 keV) and areal densities (ρr > 0.3 g/cm2) required for ignition1. Such high velocities are achieved by heating the outside surface of a spherical capsuleeither directly with a large number of laser beams (Direct Drive) or with x-rays generated within a hohlraum (Indirect Drive). A much more energetically efficient approach is to use the magnetic pressure generated by a pulsed power machine to directly drive an implosion. In this approach 5-10% ofmore » the stored energy can be converted to the implosion of a metal tube generally referred to as a “liner”. However, the implosion velocity is not very high 70-100 km/s and the convergence is cylindrical (rather than spherical) making it more difficult to achieve the high temperatures and areal densities needed for ignition.« less
  • Abstract not provided.