Fusion Science and Technology / Volume 47 / Number 3 / April 2005 / Pages 621-625
Technical Paper / Fusion Energy - Inertial Fusion Technology
We report on an ongoing study on modular Heavy Ion Fusion (HIF) drivers. The modular driver is characterized by ~20 nearly identical induction linacs, each carrying a single high current beam. In this scheme, one of the full size induction linacs can be tested as an "integrated Research Experiment" (IRE). Hence this approach offers significant advantages in terms of driver development path. For beam transport, these modules use solenoids, which are capable of carrying high line charge densities, even at low energies. A new injector concept allows compression of the beam to high line densities right after the source. The final drift compression is performed in a plasma in which the large repulsive space charge effects are neutralized. Finally, the beam is transversely compressed onto the target, using either external solenoids or current-carrying channels (in the assisted pinch mode of beam propagation). We report on progress towards a self-consistent point design from injector to target. Considerations of driver architecture, chamber environment as well as the methodology for meeting target requirements of spot size, pulse shape and symmetry are also described. Finally, some near-term experiments to address the key scientific issues are discussed.