For initial plasma production, an induction electric field generated by applying voltage to a poloidal field (PF) coil system is used to produce a Townsend avalanche breakdown. When the avalanche margins are small, as for the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) in which the induction electric field is about 0.3 V/m, the assistance of radio-frequency waves (RF) is provided to reduce the induction electric field required for reliable breakdown. However, the conditions of RF-assisted breakdown are not clear. Here, the effects of both RF and induction electric field on the RF-assisted breakdown are evaluated considering the electron loss. When traveling loss is the dominant loss, a simple model of an extended Townsend avalanche is proposed. In this model, the induction electric field required for RF-assisted breakdown can be decreased to half that required for induction breakdown.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physics and Astronomy(all)