Fusion Science and Technology / Volume 50 / Number 3 / October 2006 / Pages 361-371
Technical Paper / Stellarators
One of the characteristics of the heliotron-type magnetic configuration is that it has an intrinsic divertor structure (helical divertor). Particle control using a helical divertor configuration, to achieve improved confinement and sustainment of steady-state high-performance plasmas, is a major experimental goal in the Large Helical Device (LHD), the largest heliotron-type superconducting device, and it needs to be demonstrated on the route to the design of the heliotron-type fusion reactor. The LHD scrape-off layer (SOL) in the intrinsic helical divertor configuration has a unique magnetic field line structure consisting of stochastic regions, residual islands, whisker structures, and laminar layers contrasting with the "onion-skin"-like magnetic field line structure in poloidal divertor tokamak SOLs. Since the first experimental campaign in LHD in 1998, studies aiming at understanding the edge plasma properties in the "open" helical divertor configurations have been conducted experimentally and theoretically. In this paper, the helical divertor studies in the LHD are reviewed, and the future experimental plan is shown.