The operative cycle of a pulsed fusion power plant is composed by a sequence of phases whose duration cannot be arbitrarily chosen due to both technical and physical constraints. A pulsed DEMO-like power plant is modeled with the FRESCO code and the optimization of the operative cycle structure is carried out with a genetic algorithm in order to find the economic optimal solution. Specifically, the duration of each cycle phase (current ramp up and ramp down, plasma heating, burn, central solenoid recharge) is changed randomly in order to identify the set of phase durations that minimizes the cost of electricity. The results show that the cheapest electricity is generated when the phases composing the dwell time are minimized. Furthermore room exists to extend the burn time and reduce the number of cycles over the plant lifetime by up to 35% with negligible effects on the COE. It also emerges that the power plant under study generates cheaper electricity when operating in partially inductive mode. Moreover the optimum flat top duration is a function of the heating and current drive costs.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Civil and Structural Engineering
- Nuclear Energy and Engineering
- Materials Science(all)
- Mechanical Engineering
Bustreo, C., Maggio, D., Auriemma, F., & Zollino, G. (2017). Economic assessment of different operational reactor cycle structures in a pulsed DEMO-like power plant. Fusion Engineering and Design, 124, 1219 - 1222. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fusengdes.2017.03.121