Fusion Science and Technology / Volume 45 / Number 2 / March 2004 / Pages 113-116
Technical Paper / Target Fabrication
Fast ignition is a novel scheme for achieving laser fusion. A class of these targets involves cone mounted CH shells. We have been fabricating such targets with shells with a wide variety of diameters and wall thicknesses for several years at General Atomics. In addition, recently such shells were needed for implosion experiments at Laboratory for Laser Energetics (LLE) that for the first time were required to be gas retentive. Fabrication of these targets requires producing appropriate cones and shells, assembling the targets, and characterization of the assembled targets. The cones are produced using micromachining and plating techniques. The shells are fabricated using the depolymerizable mandrel technique followed by micromachining a hole for the cone. The cone and the shell then need to be assembled properly for gas retention and precisely in order to position the cone tip at the desired position within the shell. Both are critical for the fast ignition experiments. The presence of the cone in the shell creates new challenges in characterization of the assembled targets. Finally, for targets requiring a gas fill, the cone-shell assembly needs to be tested for gas retention and proper strength at the glue joint. This paper presents an overview of the developmental efforts and technical issues addressed during the fabrication of fast ignition targets.