An ion cyclotron range of frequency (ICRF) heating experiment was conducted in the third campaign of LHD in 1999. 1.35 MW of ICRF power were injected into the plasma and 200 kJ of stored energy were obtained, which was maintained for 5 s by ICRF power only after the termination of ECH. The impurity problem was so completely overcome that the pulse length was easily extended to 68 s at a power level of 0.7 MW. The utility of a liquid stub tuner in steady state plasma heating was demonstrated in this discharge. The energy confinement time of the ICRF heated plasma has the same dependences on plasma parameters as those of the ISS95 stellarator scaling with a multiplication factor of 1.5, which is a high efficiency comparable to that of NBI. Such an improvement in performance was obtained by various means, including: (a) scanning of the magnetic field intensity and minority concentration, (b) improvement of particle orbits due to a shift of magnetic axis and (c) reduction of the number of impurity ions by means of titanium gettering and the use of carbon divertor plates. In the optimized heating regime, ion heating turned out to be the dominant heating mechanism, unlike in CHS and WT-AS. Owing to the high quality of the heating and the parameter range being extended far beyond that of previous experiments, the experiment can be regarded as the first complete demonstration of ICRF heating in stellarators.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics
- Condensed Matter Physics