Plasma Burn-Through Simulations using the DYON Code and Predictions for ITER

This paper will discuss simulations of the full ionization process (i.e. plasma burn-through), fundamental to creating high temperature plasma. By means of an applied electric field, the gas is partially ionized by the electron avalanche process. In order for the electron temperature to increase, the remaining neutrals need to be fully ionized in the plasma burn-through phase, as radiation is the main contribution to the electron power loss. The radiated power loss can be significantly affected by impurities resulting from interaction with the plasma facing components. The DYON code is a plasma burn-through simulator developed at Joint European Torus (JET). The dynamic evolution of the plasma temperature and plasma densities including impurity content is calculated in a self-consistent way, using plasma wall interaction models. The recent installation of a beryllium wall at JET enabled to validate the plasma burnthrough model in the presence of new, metallic plasma facing components. The simulation results of the plasma burn-through phase show consistent good agreement against experiments at JET, and explain differences observed during plasma initiation with the old carbon plasma facing components. In the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER), the allowable toroidal electric field is restricted to 0.35 [V/m], which is significantly lower compared to the typical value (~1 [V/m]) used in the present devices. The limitation on toroidal electric field also reduces the range of other operation parameters during plasma formation in ITER. Thus, predictive simulations of plasma burn-through in ITER using validated model is of crucial importance. This paper provides an overview of the DYON code, together with predictive simulations for ITER using the DYON code.
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