The active control of the radial current density profile is one of the major issues of thermonuclear fusion energy research based on magnetic confinement. The lower hybrid current drive could in principle be used as an efficient tool. However, previous understanding considered the electron temperature envisaged in a reactor at the plasma periphery too large to allow penetration of the coupled radio frequency (RF) power due to strong Landau damping. In this work, we present new numerical results based on quasilinear theory, showing that the injection of power spectra with different widths of the main lobe produce an RF-driven current density profile spanning most of the outer radial half of the plasma ( is the refractive index in a parallel direction to the confinement magnetic field). Plasma kinetic profiles envisaged for the DEMO reactor are used as references. We demonstrate the robustness of the modeling results concerning the key role of the spectral width in determining the lower hybrid-driven current density profile. Scans of plasma parameters are extensively carried out with the aim of excluding the possibility that any artefact of the utilised numerical modeling would produce any novelty. We neglect here the parasitic effect of spectral broadening produced by linear scattering due to plasma density fluctuations, which mainly occurs for low magnetic field devices. This effect will be analyzed in other work that completes the report on the present breakthrough.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Nuclear Energy and Engineering
- Condensed Matter Physics
Cardinali, A., Castaldo, C., Cesario, R., Santini, F., Amicucci, L., Ceccuzzi, S., Galli, A., Mirizzi, F., Napoli, F., Panaccione, L., Schettini, G., & Tuccillo, A. A. (2017). Role of the lower hybrid spectrum in the current drive modeling for DEMO scenarios. Plasma Physics and Controlled Fusion, 59(7), -. . https://doi.org/10.1088/1361-6587/aa70b8