Nuclear fusion – the process from which the Sun derives its energy – holds the potential to become a clean,safe, highly efficient, and virtually inexhaustible energy source for the future. To mimic this process on earth, experimental fusion devices seek to heat gas to millions of degrees (creating a fusion plasma) and to confine it within magnetic fields. Learning how such plasmas behave and can be controlled is a crucial step towards realizing fusion as a sustainable energy source.At the Plasma Physics and Fusion Energy (PPFE) section at DTU Physics, we are exploring these issues,focusing on areas of high priority on the way towards a working fusion power plant. On the theoreticalfront, we are simulating plasma turbulence and transport of heat and particles in fusion plasmas (Fig. 1a). These issues play a key role in determining how the plasma behaves globally and how well it remains confined in the magnetic field of the fusion device. Understanding this is important for optimizing plasmaperformance and for controlling the heat load onto the walls of the confining vessel.Experimentally, we operate equipment to measure key plasma properties in experimental fusion devices such as ASDEX Upgrade in Germany (Fig. 1b+c). Using a technique called collective Thomson scattering(CTS), we can infer the plasma composition and the dynamics of energetic ions in the plasma. Control of these parameters is vital for achieving a high fusion yield in future power plants. We are also designing CTS equipment for the next-step fusion device ITER (Fig. 1d), in which plasma temperatures will exceed 200million C. This machine is currently being built in France in a large international effort to experimentally demonstrate fusion as a viable energy source and pave the way for the first fusion power plant.
|Conference||DTU Sustain Conference 2014|
|Location||Technical University of Denmark|
|Period||17/12/2014 → 17/12/2014|