Spectral broadening of lower hybrid waves produced by parametric instability in current drive experiments of tokamak plasmas

R. Cesario, A. Cardinali, C. Castaldo, F. Paoletti, W. Fundamenski, S. Hacquin

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In order to explain the results of the non-inductive current produced in the lower hybrid current drive (LHCD) experiments, a broadening of the radiofrequency (RF) power spectrum coupled to tokamak plasma needs to occur. The presented modelling, supported by diagnostic measurements, shows that the parametric instability (PI) driven by ion sound quasimodes, which occur in the scrape-off plasma layer located near the antenna mouth, produces a significant broadening of the launched LH spectrum. Considering the parameters of LHCD experiments of JET (Joint European Torus), and other machines as well, the PI growth rate is high enough for producing the compensation of the convective losses and, consequently, the broadening of a small fraction (of the order of 10%) of the launched power spectrum. Such a phenomenon is identified to be intrinsic to the RF power coupling in the LHCD experiments. As the principal implication of considering such spectral broadening in modelling the LH deposition profile, experiments of LHCD-sustained internal transport barriers in JET were successfully interpreted, which evidenced the effects of a well-defined LH deposition profile. The present work is important for addressing the long-lasting debate on the problem of the so-called spectral gap in LHCD. The design of LHCD scenarios relevant to the modern fusion research programme, an important requirement of which is the control of the plasma current profile in the outer half of plasma, can be properly achieved by considering PI-induced spectral broadening. © 2006 IAEA, Vienna.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)462 - 476
Number of pages15
JournalNuclear Fusion
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2006
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Condensed Matter Physics

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