The resistive wall mode (RWM) poses a limit to the maximum Β that can be sustained in magnetic fusion experiments. RWM stabilization physics at low aspect ratio is studied in high- Β National Spherical Torus Experiment (NSTX) [M. Ono, S. M. Kaye, Y.-K. M. Peng, Nucl. Fusion 40, 557 (2000)] plasmas (Βt up to 39%; ΒN up to 6.8) to understand and alleviate this constraint. Plasmas with increased q in NSTX have been maintained with Β above the computed ideal no-wall Β limit for more than 20 wall times with no signs of RWM growth in cases where toroidal rotation ωφ > ωA 4 q2 across the entire plasma cross section. Plasmas that violate this stability criterion can suffer a RWM induced collapse within a few wall times. This critical rotation profile for stabilization is in agreement with drift-kinetic theory applied to low frequency magnetohydrodynamics modes [A. Bondeson and M. S. Chu, Phys. Plasmas 3, 3013 (1996)]. A toroidally symmetric array of internal sensors has been used to observe n=1-3 RWMs in NSTX. This array consists of Bp and Br sensors both above and below the midplane at 12 toroidal locations instrumented to detect toroidal mode numbers of n=1-3. RWM perturbations exceeding 30 G have been measured with mode growth rates on the order of 5 ms. Small modes (δB<10 G) which cause minor drops in Β, with growth rates ~1500 s-1 have been observed when ΒN exceeds 6. Resonant field amplification of an externally applied error field by the stable RWM has been observed.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Condensed Matter Physics