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Roll-back planning for a compact fusion system

Author: Simon Woodruff
Requested Type: Poster Only
Submitted: 2012-12-07 16:24:55

Co-authors: D. A. Ennis, M. Gryaznevich, N. K. Hicks, D. Kingham, R. L. Miller, J. E. Stuber, A. Sykes

Contact Info:
Woodruff Scientific Inc
4000 Aurora Ave N
Seattle, WA   98103

Abstract Text:
The development path for a compact (<100MWe) fusion power core is examined by use of advanced modeling to assess performance metrics at each development step towards first commercial reactor. To guide the modeling, a new systems code is used to roll back from reactor, parameterizing and costing intermediate steps, such as Proof of Principle / fusion neutron source. Necessary performance metrics for current ramp, plasma beta, confinement and profile control defined at each stage are assessed with physics models (CORSICA/DCON, NIMEQ, and NIMROD), constrained also by recent experimental results.

A compact system such as a spheromak (examined by Woodruff Scientific) reduces operational and maintenance complexity, thereby increasing availability and reducing costs. Currents flowing the in the spheromak plasma produce toroidal field, so external windings are not necessary. Absent the TF, OH coil, inner shield and blanket, the power core becomes compact, poloidal coils much smaller, and fusion power cores substantially lower cost.

An alternative approach proposed by Tokamak Solutions is based on a compact spherical tokamak with toroidal and poloidal field coils made from high temperature superconducting material. While the tokamak is more complex than a spheromak, it is based on proven technology and a proven ability to achieve high plasma confinement regimes.

In either case, we present the analysis for a modular system (consistent with factory fabrication) that is being designed for high availability, and to provide a low cost path to first commercial power cores.

*This work forms part of the IAEA Coordinated Research Project on Compact Fusion Neutron Sources, started in November 2012

Characterization: 1.0


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