Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.588385
Title: Characteristics of plasma turbulence in the Mega Amp Spherical Tokamak
Author: Kim, Young-chul
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2012
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Abstract:
Turbulence is a major factor limiting the achievement of better tokamak performance as it enhances the transport of particles, momentum and heat which hinders the foremost objective of tokamaks. Hence, understanding and possibly being able to control turbulence in tokamaks is of paramount importance, not to mention our intellectual curiosity of it. We take the first step by making measurements of turbulence using the 2D ($8$ radial $imes$ $4$ poloidal channels) beam emission spectroscopy (BES) system on the Mega Amp Spherical Tokamak (MAST). Measured raw data are statistically processed, generating spatio-temporal correlation functions to obtain the physical characteristics of the turbulence such as spatial and temporal correlation lengths as well as its motion. The reliability of statistical techniques employed in this work is examined by generating and utilizing synthetic 2D BES data. The apparent poloidal velocity of fluctuating density patterns is estimated using the cross-correlation time delay method. The experimental results indicate that the poloidal motion of fluctuating density patterns in the lab frame arises because the patterns are advected by the strong toroidal plasma flows while the patterns are aligned with the background magnetic fields which are not parallel to the flows. Furthermore, various time scales associated with the turbulence are calculated using statistically estimated spatial correlation lengths and correlation times of turbulence. We find that turbulence correlation time, the drift time associated with ion temperature or density gradients, the ion streaming time along the magnetic field line and the magnetic drift time are comparable and possibly scale together suggesting that the turbulence, determined by the local equilibrium, is critically balanced. Finally, we argue that we have produced a critical manifold in the experimentally obtained local equilibrium parameter space separating dominant turbulent transport from a non-turbulent or weakly turbulent state. It shows that the inverse ion-temperature-gradient scale length is correlated inversely with $q/arepsilon$ (safety factor/inverse aspect ratio) and positively with the plasma rotational shear. Practically, this means that we can attain the stiffer ion-temperature-gradient, thus hotter plasma core, without increasing the rotational shear.
Supervisor: Schekochihin, Alex; Field, Anthony Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.588385  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Theoretical physics ; fusion ; turbulence ; plasma ; critical balance ; transport stiffness
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