Acceleration of neon pellets to high speeds for fusion applications

S.K. Combs, T.L. Love, T.C. Jernigan, S.L. Milora, A. Frattolillo, S. Migliori

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The injection of impurity pellets into the plasmas of tokamak fusion reactors has been proposed as a technique to lessen the deleterious effects of plasma disruptions. Equipment and techniques that were previously developed for pneumatic hydrogen pellet injection systems and used for plasma fueling applications were employed for a limited experimental study with neon pellets. Isotopic hydrogen pellets doped with neon have previously been used for injection into fusion plasmas to study impurity particle transport, and pure neon pellets are applicable for disruption studies. Using a repeating pneumatic injector in the laboratory, it was found that the formation and acceleration of 2.7-mm-diam neon pellets were relatively straightforward; reliable operation was demonstrated with both a single- and a two-stage light gas gun, including velocities of ∼700 m/s with a single-stage injector and up to 1740 m/s with a two-stage injector. Based on the operating sequences and successful tests demonstrated in the laboratory experiments, a three-barrel repeating pneumatic injector installed on the DIII-D tokamak was equipped with the necessary components for neon operation and has been used in initial disruption experiments with 1.8-mm-diam neon pellets. © 1996 American Institute of Physics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)837 - 839
Number of pages3
JournalReview of Scientific Instruments
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Instrumentation

Cite this

Combs, S. K., Love, T. L., Jernigan, T. C., Milora, S. L., Frattolillo, A., & Migliori, S. (1996). Acceleration of neon pellets to high speeds for fusion applications. Review of Scientific Instruments, 67(3), 837 - 839.