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Magnetic confinement field range

  1. Apr 7, 2008 #1
    How would using a kilo Tesla magnetic field (quite strong I know) affect magnetic confinement fusion.

    can this overcome main difficulties ?

    I think if the field was stable for enough time this would increase plasma lifetime and the reaction cross section .

    I know that a kilo Tesla pulsed field was generated using destructive coils but it's not stable enough, but I hope higher stability will be achieved..

    Any thoughts ...
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 7, 2008 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    I believe the strongest superconducting magnets produce fields of about 10-15 T in steady-state, but certainly stronger fields can be produced explosively, but that means short term transients.

    Also realize that the pressure of a magnetically confined plasma is proportional to B2 - so if one does a magnetic field of say 1 kTesla, try to determine the pressure, then determined the stress in the magnetic or containment vessel necessary to hold that pressure. I don't believe there is a material strong enough - or one would require substantial mass/cross section.
  4. Apr 7, 2008 #3
    The reaction cross section is a function of kinetic energy of the particles, so confinement won't affect it, but the reaction rate will increase if the density is higher. Lifetime should increase as well, since a plasma under that much pressure shouldn't lose energy to its surroundings.

    But you have to take into account how this field will affect other operations, like the magnetic field used for ohmic heating, or the flow of coolant in the shielding and blanket. What might be good for the plasma might be bad for the rest of the system.
  5. Apr 8, 2008 #4
    Ok then , Isn't there any way to use a low (primary) field for heating plasma then,
    inducing the pulsed kilo Tesla field to cause fusion?

    I think if the magnetic field was insulated well (magnetic screens , etc..) this may not affect other operations , or am I mistaken?
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