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Title: Description of the NIF Laser

The possibility of imploding small capsules to produce mini-fusion explosions was explored soon after the first thermonuclear explosions in the early 1950s. Various technologies have been pursued to achieve the focused power and energy required for laboratory-scale fusion. Each technology has its own challenges. For example, electron and ion beams can deliver the large amounts of energy but must contend with Coulomb repulsion forces that make focusing these beams a daunting challenge. The demonstration of the first laser in 1960 provided a new option. Energy from laser beams can be focused and deposited within a small volume; the challenge became whether a practical laser system can be constructed that delivers the power and energy required while meeting all other demands for achieving a high-density, symmetric implosion. The National Ignition Facility (NIF) is the laser designed and built to meet the challenges for study of high-energy-density physics and inertial confinement fusion (ICF) implosions. This study describes the architecture, systems, and subsystems of NIF. Finally, it describes how they partner with each other to meet these new, complex demands and describes how laser science and technology were woven together to bring NIF into reality.
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  1. Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
LLNL-JRNL-658239
Journal ID: ISSN 1536-1055
Grant/Contract Number:
AC52-07NA27344
Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Fusion Science and Technology
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 69; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 1536-1055
Publisher:
American Nuclear Society
Research Org:
Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY; 42 ENGINEERING; ICF; laser; fusion driver; NIF laser
OSTI Identifier:
1256427