Pulsed Power Fusion Program Update


The US Department of Energy has supported a substantial research program in Inertial Confinement Fusion (ICF) since the early 1970s. Over the ensuing 25 years, pulsed power approaches to inertial fusion have remained of interest primarily because of the high energy, efficiency, and relatively low cost of the technology when compared to the mainline ICF approach involving large glass lasers. These compelling advantages, however, have been tempered with the difficulty in concentrating the energy in space and time to create the high energy and power density required to achieve temperatures useful in indirect drive ICF. Since the Beams '96 meeting, the situation has changed dramatically, and extremely high X-ray power (290 TW) and energy (1.8 MJ) have been produced in fast z-pinch implosions on the Z accelerator. These sources have been utilized to heat hohlraums to greater than 150 eV and have opened the door to important ICF capsule experiments. Although light ion beams offer a long term potential for fusion energy, we are suspending our ion beam research this year to maximize progress with z pinches.



Keywords and Phrases

1.8 MJ; 290 TW; ICF; ICF Capsule Experiments; Sandia Pulsed Power Fusion Program; X-Ray Production; Z Accelerator; Z Pinch; Fast Z-Pinch Implosions; Fusion Reactor Ignition; Hohlraums; Indirect Drive ICF; Inertial Confinement Fusion; Inertial Fusion; Plasma Inertial Confinement; Power Supplies to Apparatus; Pulsed Power; Pulsed Power Technology

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Article - Conference proceedings

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© 1998 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jan 1998