A novel particle time of flight diagnostic for measurements of shock- and compression-bang times in D3He and DT implosions at the NIF

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA.
Review of Scientific Instruments (Impact Factor: 1.58). 07/2012; 83(10). DOI: 10.1063/1.4731000

ABSTRACT The particle-time-of-flight (pTOF) diagnostic, fielded alongside a wedge range-filter (WRF) proton spectrometer, will provide an absolute timing for the shock-burn weighted ρR measurements that will validate the modeling of implosion dynamics at the National Ignition Facility (NIF). In the first phase of the project, pTOF has recorded accurate bang times in cryogenic DT, DT exploding pusher, and D3He implosions using DD or DT neutrons with an accuracy better than ±70 ps. In the second phase of the project, a deflecting magnet will be incorporated into the pTOF design for simultaneous measurements of shock- and compression-bang times in D3He-filled surrogate implosions using D3He protons and DD-neutrons, respectively.

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    ABSTRACT: Compact wedge-range-filter proton spectrometers cover proton energies ∼3-20 MeV. They have been used at the OMEGA laser facility for more than a decade for measuring spectra of primary D(3)He protons in D(3)He implosions, secondary D(3)He protons in DD implosions, and ablator protons in DT implosions; they are now being used also at the National Ignition Facility. The spectra are used to determine proton yields, shell areal density at shock-bang time and compression-bang time, fuel areal density, and implosion symmetry. There have been changes in fabrication and in analysis algorithms, resulting in a wider energy range, better accuracy and precision, and better robustness for survivability with indirect-drive inertial-confinement-fusion experiments.
    The Review of scientific instruments 10/2012; 83(10):10D908. DOI:10.1063/1.4732065 · 1.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Clear evidence of the transition from hydrodynamiclike to strongly kinetic shock-driven implosions is, for the first time, revealed and quantitatively assessed. Implosions with a range of initial equimolar D^{3}He gas densities show that as the density is decreased, hydrodynamic simulations strongly diverge from and increasingly overpredict the observed nuclear yields, from a factor of ∼2 at 3.1 mg/cm^{3} to a factor of 100 at 0.14 mg/cm^{3}. (The corresponding Knudsen number, the ratio of ion mean-free path to minimum shell radius, varied from 0.3 to 9; similarly, the ratio of fusion burn duration to ion diffusion time, another figure of merit of kinetic effects, varied from 0.3 to 14.) This result is shown to be unrelated to the effects of hydrodynamic mix. As a first step to garner insight into this transition, a reduced ion kinetic (RIK) model that includes gradient-diffusion and loss-term approximations to several transport processes was implemented within the framework of a one-dimensional radiation-transport code. After empirical calibration, the RIK simulations reproduce the observed yield trends, largely as a result of ion diffusion and the depletion of the reacting tail ions.
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