Magnetohydrodynamic Simulation of Solid-Deuterium - Z-Pinch Experiments
Solid-deuterium-initiated Z-pinch experiments are numerically simulated using a two-dimensional resistive magnetohydrodynamic model, which includes many important experimental details, such as "cold-start" initial conditions, thermal conduction, radiative energy loss, actual discharge current vs. time, and grids of sufficient size and resolution to allow realistic development of the plasma. The alternating -direction-implicit numerical technique used meets the substantial demands presented by such a computational task. Simulations of fiber-initiated experiments show that when the fiber becomes fully ionized (at a time depending on current ramp and fiber thickness), rapidly developing m = 0 instabilities, which originated in the coronal plasma generated from the ablating fiber, drive intense non-uniform heating and rapid expansion of the plasma column. The possibility that inclusion of additional physical effects would improve stability is explored. Finite-Larmor-radius-ordered Hall and diamagnetic pressure terms in the magnetic field evolution equation, corresponding energy equation terms, and separate ion and electron energy equations are included; these do not change the basic results. Model diagnostics, such as shadowgrams and interferograms, generated from simulation results, are in good agreement with experiment. Two alternative experimental approaches are explored: high-current magnetic implosion of hollow cylindrical deuterium shells, and "plasma -on wire" (POW) implosion of low-density plasma onto a central deuterium fiber. By minimizing instability problems, these techniques may allow attainment of higher temperatures and densities than possible with bare fiber-initiated Z -pinches. Conditions for significant D-D or D-T fusion neutron production may be realizable with these implosion -based approaches.
- Pub Date:
- Physics: Fluid and Plasma; Physics: General