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  1. Parameter-Space Survey of Linear G-mode and Interchange in Extended Magnetohydrodynamics

    The extended magnetohydrodynamic stability of interchange modes is studied in two configurations. In slab geometry, a local dispersion relation for the gravitational interchange mode (g-mode) with three different extensions of the MHD model [P. Zhu, et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 101, 085005 (2008)] is analyzed. Our results delineate where drifts stablize the g-mode with gyroviscosity alone and with a two-fluid Ohm’s law alone. Including the two-fluid Ohm’s law produces an ion drift wave that interacts with the g-mode. This interaction then gives rise to a second instability at finite k y. A second instability is also observed in numerical extended MHD computations of linear interchange in cylindrical screw-pinch equilibria, the second configuration. Particularly with incomplete models, this mode limits the regions of stability for physically realistic conditions. But, applying a consistent two-temperature extended MHD model that includes the diamagnetic heat flux density (more » $$\vec{q}$$ *) makes the onset of the second mode occur at larger Hall parameter. For conditions relevant to the SSPX experiment [E.B. Hooper, Plasma Phys. Controlled Fusion 54, 113001 (2012)], significant stabilization is observed for Suydam parameters as large as unity (D s≲1).« less
  2. A current-driven resistive instability and its nonlinear effects in simulations of coaxial helicity injection in a tokamak

    An instability observed in whole-device, resistive magnetohydrodynamic simulations of the driven phase of coaxial helicity injection in the National Spherical Torus eXperiment is identified as a current-driven resistive mode in an unusual geometry that transiently generates a current sheet. The mode consists of plasma flow velocity and magnetic field eddies in a tube aligned with the magnetic field at the surface of the injected magnetic flux. At low plasma temperatures (~10–20 eV), the mode is benign, but at high temperatures (~100 eV) its amplitude undergoes relaxation oscillations, broadening the layer of injected current and flow at the surface of themore » injected toroidal flux and background plasma. The poloidal-field structure is affected and the magnetic surface closure is generally prevented while the mode undergoes relaxation oscillations during injection. Furthermore, this study describes the mode and uses linearized numerical computations and an analytic slab model to identify the unstable mode.« less
    Cited by 1
  3. Stabilization of numerical interchange in spectral-element magnetohydrodynamics

    In this study, auxiliary numerical projections of the divergence of flow velocity and vorticity parallel to magnetic field are developed and tested for the purpose of suppressing unphysical interchange instability in magnetohydrodynamic simulations. The numerical instability arises with equal-order C 0 finite- and spectral-element expansions of the flow velocity, magnetic field, and pressure and is sensitive to behavior at the limit of resolution. The auxiliary projections are motivated by physical field-line bending, and coercive responses to the projections are added to the flow-velocity equation. Their incomplete expansions are limited to the highest-order orthogonal polynomial in at least one coordinate ofmore » the spectral elements. Cylindrical eigenmode computations show that the projections induce convergence from the stable side with first-order ideal-MHD equations during h-refinement and p-refinement. Hyperbolic and parabolic projections and responses are compared, together with different methods for avoiding magnetic divergence error. Lastly, the projections are also shown to be effective in linear and nonlinear time-dependent computations with the NIMROD code [C. R. Sovinec, et al., J. Comput. Phys. 195 (2004) 355-386], provided that the projections introduce numerical dissipation.« less
  4. Analytical and numerical treatment of resistive drift instability in a plasma slab

    An analytic approach combining the effect of equilibrium diamagnetic flows and the finite ionsound gyroradius associated with electron−ion decoupling and kinetic Alfvén wave dispersion is derived to study resistive drift instabilities in a plasma slab. Linear numerical computations using the NIMROD code are performed with cold ions and hot electrons in a plasma slab with a doubly periodic box bounded by two perfectly conducting walls. A linearly unstable resistive drift mode is observed in computations with a growth rate that is consistent with the analytic dispersion relation. The resistive drift mode is expected to be suppressed by magnetic shear inmore » unbounded domains, but the mode is observed in numerical computations with and without magnetic shear. In the slab model, the finite slab thickness and the perfectly conducting boundary conditions are likely to account for the lack of suppression.« less
  5. Two-fluid and finite Larmor radius effects on helicity evolution in a plasma pinch

    The evolution of magnetic energy, helicity, and hybrid helicity during nonlinear relaxation of a driven-damped plasma pinch is compared in visco-resistive magnetohydrodynamics and two-fluid models with and without the ion gyroviscous stress tensor. Magnetic energy and helicity are supplied via a boundary electric field which initially balances the resistive dissipation, and the plasma undergoes multiple relaxation events during the nonlinear evolution. The magnetic helicity is well conserved relative to the magnetic energy over each event, which is short compared with the global resistive diffusion time. The magnetic energy decreases by roughly 1.5% of its initial value over a relaxation event,more » while the magnetic helicity changes by at most 0.2% of the initial value. The hybrid helicity is dominated by magnetic helicity in low-β pinch conditions and is also well conserved. Differences of less than 1% between magnetic helicity and hybrid helicity are observed with two-fluid modeling and result from cross helicity evolution. The cross helicity is found to change appreciably due to the first-order finite Larmor radius effects which have not been included in contemporary relaxation theories. The plasma current evolves towards the flat parallel current state predicted by Taylor relaxation theory but does not achieve it. Plasma flow develops significant structure for two-fluid models, and the flow perpendicular to the magnetic field is much more substantial than the flow along it.« less
  6. The formation of blobs from a pure interchange process

    In this work, we focus on examining a pure interchange process in a shear-less slab configuration as a prototype mechanism for blob formation. We employ full magnetohydrodynamic simulations to demonstrate that the blob-like structures can emerge through the nonlinear development of a pure interchange instability originating from a pedestal-like transition region. In the early nonlinear stage, filamentary structures develop and extend in the direction of the effective gravity. The blob-like structures appear when the radially extending filaments break off and disconnect from the core plasma. The morphology and the dynamics of these filaments and blobs vary dramatically with a sensitivemore » dependence on the dissipation mechanisms in the system and the initial perturbation. Despite the complexity in morphology and dynamics, the nature of the entire blob formation process in the shear-less slab configuration remains strictly interchange without involving any change in magnetic topology.« less
  7. Extended MHD modeling of tearing-driven magnetic relaxation

  8. Nonlinear modeling of forced magnetic reconnection in slab geometry with NIMROD

    Cited by 1
  9. Fusion Energy Sciences Exascale Requirements Review. An Office of Science review sponsored jointly by Advanced Scientific Computing Research and Fusion Energy Sciences, January 27-29, 2016, Gaithersburg, Maryland

    The additional computing power offered by the planned exascale facilities could be transformational across the spectrum of plasma and fusion research — provided that the new architectures can be efficiently applied to our problem space. The collaboration that will be required to succeed should be viewed as an opportunity to identify and exploit cross-disciplinary synergies. To assess the opportunities and requirements as part of the development of an overall strategy for computing in the exascale era, the Exascale Requirements Review meeting of the Fusion Energy Sciences (FES) community was convened January 27–29, 2016, with participation from a broad range ofmore » fusion and plasma scientists, specialists in applied mathematics and computer science, and representatives from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and its major computing facilities. This report is a summary of that meeting and the preparatory activities for it and includes a wealth of detail to support the findings. Technical opportunities, requirements, and challenges are detailed in this report (and in the recent report on the Workshop on Integrated Simulation). Science applications are described, along with mathematical and computational enabling technologies. Also see for more information.« less

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