[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Experimental tests are in progress to evaluate the accuracy of the modeled
iron opacity at solar interior conditions [J.E. Bailey et al., Phys. Plasmas
16, 058101 (2009)]. The iron sample is placed on top of the Sandia National
Laboratories z-pinch dynamic hohlraum (ZPDH) radiation source. The samples are
heated to 150 - 200 eV electron temperatures and 7e21 - 4e22 e/cc electron
densities by the ZPDH radiation and backlit at its stagnation [T. Nagayama et
al., Phys. Plasmas 21, 056502 (2014)]. The backlighter attenuated by the heated
sample plasma is measured by four spectrometers along +/- 9 degree with respect
to the z-pinch axis to infer the sample iron opacity. Here we describe
measurements of the source-to-sample distance that exploit the parallax of
spectrometers that view the half-moon-shaped sample from +/-9 degree. The
measured sample temperature decreases with increased source-to-sample distance.
This distance must be taken into account for understanding the sample heating.
Review of Scientific Instruments 07/2014; 85:11D603. · 1.60 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Experimental tests are in progress to evaluate the accuracy of the modeled iron opacity at solar interior conditions, in particular to better constrain the solar abundance problem [S. Basu and H. M. Antia, Phys. Rep. 457, 217 (2008)]. Here, we describe measurements addressing three of the key requirements for reliable opacity experiments: control of sample conditions, independent sample condition diagnostics, and verification of sample condition uniformity. The opacity samples consist of iron/magnesium layers tamped by plastic. By changing the plastic thicknesses, we have controlled the iron plasma conditions to reach (1) Te = 167 +/- 3 eV and ne =(7.1 +/- 1.5)e22 cm^3, (2) Te =170 +/- 2eV and ne =(2.0 +/- 0.2)e22 cm^3, and (3) Te =196 +/- 6eV and ne=(3.8 +/- 0.8)e22 cm^3, which were measured by magnesium tracer K-shell spectroscopy. The opacity sample non-uniformity was directly measured by a separate experiment where Al is mixed into the side of the sample facing the radiation source and Mg into the other side. The iron condition was confirmed to be uniform within their measurement uncertainties by Al and Mg K-shell spectroscopy. The conditions are suitable for testing opacity calculations needed for modeling the solar interior, other stars, and high energy density plasmas.
Physics of Plasmas 05/2014; 21:056502. · 2.38 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent experiments on the Z accelerator have produced high-energy (17 keV) inner-shell K-alpha emission from molybdenum wire array z-pinches. Extensive absolute power and spectroscopic diagnostics along with collisional-radiative modeling enable detailed investigation into the roles of thermal, hot electron, and fluorescence processes in the production of high-energy x-rays. We show that changing the dimensions of the arrays can impact the proportion of thermal and non-thermal K-shell x-rays.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Z facility at the Sandia National Laboratories is the most energetic terrestrial source of X-rays and provides an opportunity to produce photoionized plasmas in a relatively well characterised radiation environment. We use detailed atomic-kinetic and spectral simulations to analyze the absorption spectra of a photoionized neon plasma driven by the x-ray flux from a z-pinch. The broadband x-ray flux both photoionizes and backlights the plasma. In particular, we focus on extracting the charge state distribution of the plasma and the characteristics of the radiation field driving the plasma in order to estimate the ionisation parameter.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Advancements have been made in the diagnostic techniques to measure accurately the total radiated x-ray yield and power from z-pinch implosion experiments at the Z machine with high accuracy. The Z machine is capable of outputting 2 MJ and 330 TW of x-ray yield and power, and accurately measuring these quantities is imperative. We will describe work over the past several years which include the development of new diagnostics, improvements to existing diagnostics, and implementation of automated data analysis routines. A set of experiments on the Z machine were conducted in which the load and machine configuration were held constant. During this shot series, it was observed that the total z-pinch x-ray emission power determined from the two common techniques for inferring the x-ray power, a Kimfol filtered x-ray diode diagnostic and the total power and energy diagnostic, gave 449 TW and 323 TW, respectively. Our analysis shows the latter to be the more accurate interpretation. More broadly, the comparison demonstrates the necessity to consider spectral response and field of view when inferring x-ray powers from z-pinch sources.
Review of Scientific Instruments 01/2014; 85(8):083501-083501-11. · 1.60 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Novel experimental data are reported that reveal helical instability formation on imploding z-pinch liners that are premagnetized with an axial field. Such instabilities differ dramatically from the mostly azimuthally symmetric instabilities that form on unmagnetized liners. The helical structure persists at nearly constant pitch as the liner implodes. This is surprising since, at the liner surface, the azimuthal drive field presumably dwarfs the axial field for all but the earliest stages of the experiment. These fundamentally 3D results provide a unique and challenging test for 3D-magnetohydrodynamics simulations.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Multiple experimental campaigns have been executed to study the implosions of initially solid beryllium (Be) liners (tubes) on the Z pulsed-power accelerator. The implosions were driven by current pulses that rose from 0 to 20 MA in either 100 or 200 ns (200 ns for pulse shaping experiments). These studies were conducted in support of the recently proposed Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion concept [Slutz et al., Phys. Plasmas 17, 056303 (2010)], as well as for exploring novel equation-of-state measurement techniques. The experiments used thick-walled liners that had an aspect ratio (initial outer radius divided by initial wall thickness) of either 3.2, 4, or 6. From these studies, we present three new primary results. First, we present radiographic images of imploding Be liners, where each liner contained a thin aluminum sleeve for enhancing the contrast and visibility of the liner's inner surface in the images. These images allow us to assess the stability of the liner's inner surface more accurately and more directly than was previously possible. Second, we present radiographic images taken early in the implosion (prior to any motion of the liner's inner surface) of a shockwave propagating radially inward through the liner wall. Radial mass density profiles from these shock compression experiments are contrasted with profiles from experiments where the Z accelerator's pulse shaping capabilities were used to achieve shockless (“quasi-isentropic”) liner compression. Third, we present “micro-” measurements of azimuthal magnetic field penetration into the initially vacuum-filled interior of a shocked liner. Our measurements and simulations reveal that the penetration commences shortly after the shockwave breaks out from the liner's inner surface. The field then accelerates this low-density “precursor” plasma to the axis of symmetry.
Physics of Plasmas 05/2013; 20(5). · 2.38 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We present results of Monte Carlo simulations of microchannel plate (MCP) response to x-rays in the 250 eV to 20 keV energy range as a function of both x-ray energy and impact angle. The model is based on the model presented in Rochau et al. However, while the Rochau et al. model was two-dimensional, and their results only went to 5 keV, our results have been expanded to 20 keV, and our model has been incorporated into a three-dimensional Monte Carlo MCP model that we have developed over the past several years. X-ray penetration through multiple MCP pore walls is increasingly important above 5 keV. The effect of x-ray penetration through multiple pores on MCP performance was studied and is presented.
Plasma Science (ICOPS), 2013 Abstracts IEEE International Conference on; 01/2013
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We present an experimental platform for measuring hydrogen Balmer emission
and absorption line profiles for plasmas with white dwarf (WD) photospheric
conditions (T_e ~ 1 eV, n_e ~ 10^17 cm^-3). These profiles will be used to
benchmark WD atmosphere models, which, used with the spectroscopic method, are
responsible for determining fundamental parameters (e.g., effective
temperature, mass) for tens of thousands of WDs. Our experiment, performed at
the Z Pulsed Power Facility at Sandia National Laboratories, uses the large
amount of x-rays generated from a z-pinch dynamic hohlraum to drive plasma
formation in a gas cell. The platform is unique compared to past hydrogen line
profile experiments in that the plasma is radiation-driven. This decouples the
heating source from the plasma to be studied in the sense that the radiation
temperature causing the photoionization is independent of the initial
conditions of the gas. For the first time we measure hydrogen Balmer lines in
absorption at these conditions in the laboratory for the purpose of
benchmarking Stark-broadened line shapes. The platform can be used to study
other plasma species and to explore non-LTE, time-dependent
collisional-radiative atomic kinetics.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Astrophysics experiments by Falcon et al. to create white dwarf photospheres
in the laboratory are currently underway. The experimental platform measures
Balmer line profiles of a radiation-driven, pure hydrogen plasma in emission
and in absorption for conditions at T_e ~ 1 eV, n_e ~ 10^17 cm^-3. These will
be used to compare and test line broadening theories used in white dwarf
atmosphere models. The flexibility of the platform allows us to expand the
direction of our experiments using other compositions. We discuss future
prospects such as exploring helium plasmas and carbon/oxygen plasmas relevant
to the photospheres of DBs and hot DQs, respectively.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The pinned optically aligned diagnostic dock (PODD) is a multi-configuration diagnostic platform designed to measure x-ray emission on the Z facility. The PODD houses two plasma emission acquisition (PEA) systems, which are aligned with a set of precision machined pins. The PEA systems are modular, allowing a single diagnostic housing to support several different diagnostics. The PEA configurations fielded to date include both time-resolved and time-integrated, 1D spatially resolving, elliptical crystal spectrometers, and time-integrated, 1D spatially resolving, convex crystal spectrometers. Additional proposed configurations include time-resolved, monochromatic mirrored pinhole imagers and arrays of filtered x-ray diodes, diamond photo-conducting diode detectors, and bolometers. The versatility of the PODD system will allow the diagnostic configuration of the Z facility to be changed without significantly adding to the turn-around time of the machine. Additionally, the PODD has been designed to allow instrument setup to be completed entirely off-line, leaving only a refined alignment process to be performed just prior to a shot, which is a significant improvement over the instrument the PODD replaces. Example data collected with the PODD are presented.
The Review of scientific instruments 10/2012; 83(10):10D714. · 1.52 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Experiments have been performed at Sandia National Laboratories Z-facility to validate iron opacity models relevant to the solar convection/radiation zone boundary. Sample conditions were measured by mixing Mg with the Fe and using Mg K-shell line transmission spectra, assuming that the plasma was uniform. We develop a spectral model that accounts for hypothetical gradients, and compute synthetic spectra to quantitatively evaluate the plasma gradient size that can be diagnosed. Two sample designs are investigated, assuming linear temperature and density gradients. First, Mg uniformly mixed with Fe enables temperature gradients greater than 10% to be detected. The second design uses Mg mixed into one side and Al mixed into the other side of the sample in an attempt to more accurately infer the sample gradient. Both temperature and density gradients as small as a few percent can be detected with this design. Experiments have successfully recorded spectra with the second design. In future research, the spectral model will be used to place bounds on gradients that exist in Z opacity experiments.
The Review of scientific instruments 10/2012; 83(10):10E128. · 1.52 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Curved crystals are used as diffraction elements for X-ray spectrometers
in diagnosing laser plasma sources at the National Ignition Facility at
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and on the Z machine at Sandia
National Laboratories. Reflectivity curves for various curved crystals
used at these facilities have been measured in National Security
Technologies' (NSTec) X-ray laboratory. The X-ray source is a diode
arrangement with a dual goniometer system that orients a monochromator
and the sample crystal to the appropriate Bragg angles. The reflectivity
curve is then measured at energies that ranged from 0.7 to 15.8 keV.
This presentation covers reflectivity curve measurements on circular
cylindrical KAP crystals and elliptical cylindrical PET crystals. The
integrated reflectivity, the curve width, and the peak reflectivity were
determined. The integrated reflectivity and the width of curved crystals
were much larger than the values for the corresponding flat crystal,
increasing as the radius of curvature decreases for a given photon
energy. For a fixed radius of curvature, they increase as the photon
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: High quality absorption spectroscopy measurements were recently achieved at the Sandia National Laboratories Z facility in the soft x-ray range. Detailed spectral resolution knowledge is a key requirement for their interpretation. We present a methodology for measuring the wavelength dependent crystal spectral resolution, with a particular focus on the 7-17 Å range. We apply this procedure to the case of 1st order resolution of a potassium acid phthalate (KAP) convex crystal spectrometer. One calibration issue is that inferring the crystal resolution requires that the x-ray source emission feature widths and spectral profiles are known. To this aim, we resolve Manson x-ray source Si, Al, and Mg Kα line profiles using a KAP crystal spectrometer in 2nd order to achieve relatively high resolution. This information is exploited to measure 1st order KAP resolving powers λ∕Δλ∼1100-1300 in the 7-10 Å wavelength range.
The Review of scientific instruments 10/2012; 83(10):10E133. · 1.52 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pulsed power machines typically utilize vacuum transmission lines to
deliver energy to the load. Large-scale drivers often employ several
parallel transmission lines to reduce inductance. Post-hole convolutes
can be used to combine the current from the transmission lines at the
load. Losses in the post-hole convolute and vacuum transmission lines on
the Z-machine are as high as 20% of the peak current. Spectroscopic
measurements of the plasma that forms on the power flow surfaces are
underway. A second visible spectroscopy system has been added to the Z
diagnostic suite, which allows symmetry measurements of the plasma
formation. Investigations of the convolute plasma origin and propagation
are ongoing. *Sandia National Laboratories is a multi-program laboratory
managed and operated by Sandia Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of
Lockheed Martin Corporation, for the U.S. Department of Energy's
National Nuclear Security Administration under contract
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We continue to improve upon the laboratory astrophysics experiments to
create macroscopic ( 9-38 cm3) hydrogen plasmas with white
dwarf (WD) photospheric conditions (electron temperature and density).
Falcon et al. (2010) demonstrate the ability to create the plasma and to
observe time-resolved spectra throughout its 400 ns lifetime. We extend
the observations from emission to absorption spectra, improve the design
of the experimental platform, and discuss the astrophysical motivations,
spearheaded by recent work in WD spectroscopy and atmosphere modeling.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Spatially and temporally resolved X-ray emission lines contain information about temperatures, densities, velocities, and the gradients in a plasma. Extracting this information from optically thick lines emitted from complex ions in dynamic, three-dimensional, non-LTE plasmas requires self-consistent accounting for both non-LTE atomic physics and non-local radiative transfer. We present a brief description of a hybrid-structure spectroscopic atomic model coupled to an iterative tabular on-the-spot treatment of radiative transfer that can be applied to plasmas of arbitrary material composition, conditions, and geometries. The effects of Doppler line shifts on the self-consistent radiative transfer within the plasma and the emergent emission and absorption spectra are included in the model. Sample calculations for a two-level atom in a uniform cylindrical plasma are given, showing reasonable agreement with more sophisticated transport models and illustrating the potential complexity – or richness – of radially resolved emission lines from an imploding cylindrical plasma. Also presented is a comparison of modeled L- and K-shell spectra to temporally and radially resolved emission data from a Cu:Ni plasma. Finally, some shortcomings of the model and possible paths for improvement are discussed.
High Energy Density Physics 12/2011; 7(4):303–311. · 1.60 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Post-hole convolutes are used in large pulsed power devices to combine
the current from several self-magnetically insulated transmission lines
at the load. The efficiency of Z's post-hole convolute has decreased
with increasing electrical power. Losses as high as 20% of the peak
current have been recorded on the most lossy shots. Spectroscopic
measurements of the plasma that forms in the convolute are underway.
Initial results show that there is a strong correlation between
convolute plasma density and the load. This presentation will cover
convolute plasma behavior and loss current for several load
configurations on the Z-Machine. *Sandia National Laboratories is a
multi-program laboratory managed and operated by Sandia Corporation, a
wholly owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Corporation, for the U.S.
Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration under
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The observation of Doppler splitting in K-shell x-ray lines emitted from optically thin dopants is used to infer implosion velocities of up to 70 cm/μs in wire-array and gas-puff Z pinches at drive currents of 15-20 MA. These data can benchmark numerical implosion models, which produce reasonable agreement with the measured velocity in the emitting region. Doppler splitting is obscured in lines with strong opacity, but red-shifted absorption produced by the cooler halo of material backlit by the hot core assembling on axis can be used to diagnose velocity in the trailing mass.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We describe a pair of time-integrated transmission spectrometers that are designed to survey 7-28 keV (1.9 to 0.43 Å) x-ray photons produced by experiments on the Sandia Z pulsed power facility. Each spectrometer uses a quartz 10-11 crystal in a Cauchois geometry with a slit to provide spatial resolution along one dimension. The spectrometers are located in the harsh environment of the Z vacuum chamber, which necessitates that their design be compact and rugged. Example data from calibration tests and Z experiments are shown that illustrate the utility of the instruments.
The Review of scientific instruments 06/2011; 82(6):063113. · 1.52 Impact Factor