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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Modeling of Interfilament Coupling Currents and Their Effect on Magnet Quench Protection


Variations in the transport current of a superconducting magnet cause several types of transitory losses. Due to its relatively short time constant, usually of the order of a few tens of milliseconds, interfilament coupling loss can have a significant effect on the coil protection against overheating after a quench. This loss is deposited in the strands and can facilitate a more homogeneous transition to the normal state of the coil turns. Furthermore, the presence of local interfilament coupling currents reduces the magnet's differential inductance, which in turn provokes a faster discharge of the transport current. The lumped-element dynamic electrothermal model of a superconducting magnet has been developed to reproduce these effects. Simulations are compared to experimental electrical transients and found in good agreement. After its validation, the model can be used for predicting the performance of quench protection systems based on energy extraction, quench heaters, the newly developed coupling-loss-induced quench protection system, or combinations of those. The impact of interfilament coupling loss on each protection system is discussed.

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