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High harmonic ion cyclotron heating in DIII-D: beam ion absorption and sawtooth stabilization

  • Author(s): Heidbrink, WW
  • Fredrickson, ED
  • Mau, TK
  • Petty, CC
  • Pinsker, RI
  • Porkolab, M
  • Rice, BW
  • et al.
Abstract

Combined neutral beam injection and fast wave heating at the fourth cyclotron harmonic produce an energetic deuterium beam ion tail in the DIII-D tokamak. When the concentration of thermal hydrogen exceeds approx. 5%, the beam ion absorption is suppressed in favour of second harmonic hydrogen absorption. As theoretically expected, the beam absorption increases with beam ion gyroradius; also, central absorption at the fifth harmonic is weaker than central absorption at the fourth harmonic. For central heating at the fourth harmonic, an energetic, perpendicular, beam population forms inside the q = 1 surface. The beam ion tail transiently stabilizes the sawtooth instability but destabilizes toroidicity induced Alfven eigenmodes (TAEs). Saturation of the central heating correlates with the onset of the TAEs. Continued expansion of the q = 1 radius eventually precipitates a sawtooth crash; complete magnetic reconnection is observed.

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