Fusion Science and Technology / Volume 55 / Number 2 / February 2009 / Pages 188-203
Technical Paper / Electron Cyclotron Emission and Electron Cyclotron Resonance Heating
Neoclassical tearing modes (NTMs) deteriorate high-pressure tokamak plasma confinement and can be suppressed by electron cyclotron current drive (ECCD). In order to obtain efficient suppression, the ECCD power needs to be deposited at the center of an NTM magnetic island. To enhance efficiency, this power also needs to be synchronized in phase with the rotation of the island. The problem is that of real-time detection and precise localization of the island(s) in order to provide the feedback signal required to control the ECCD power deposition area with an accuracy of 1 to 2 cm. Existing schemes based on mode location, equilibrium reconstruction, and plasma profile measurements are limited in positional and temporal accuracy and moreover will become very complex when applied to ITER. To overcome these limitations, it is proposed to provide the feedback signal from electron cyclotron emission (ECE) measurements taken along the identical line of sight as traced by the incident ECCD millimeter-wave beam but in reverse direction. Experiments on TEXTOR have demonstrated a proof of principle. These measurements motivate the further development and the implementation of such an ECCD-aligned ECE system for NTM control in larger fusion machines. Possible implementation of such a system on ASDEX-Upgrade, based on waveguides equipped with a fast directional switch, is presented in this paper. Possible further development for ITER is also discussed.