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(EX/P4-19) Liquid Lithium Limiter Effects on Tokamak Plasmas and Plasma-Liquid Surface Interactions

R. Kaita1), R. Majeski1), R. Doerner2), G. Antar2), M. Baldwin2), R. Conn2), P. Efthimion1), M. Finkenthal3), D. Hoffman1), B. Jones1), S. Krashenninikov2), H. Kugel1), S. Luckhardt2), R. Maingi4), J. Menard1), T. Munsat1), D. Stutman3), G. Taylor1), J. Timberlake1), V. Soukhanovskii1), D. Whyte2), R. Woolley1), L. Zakharov1)
1) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Princeton (NJ), USA
2) University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, CA, USA
3) Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, MD, USA
4) Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN, USA

Abstract.  We present the results from the first experiments with a large area liquid lithium limiter in a magnetic fusion device, and its effect on improving plasma performance by reducing particle recycling. Using large area liquid metal surfaces in any major fusion device is unlikely before a test on a smaller scale. This has motivated its demonstration in the CDX-U spherical torus with a unique, fully toroidal lithium limiter. The highest current discharges were obtained with a liquid lithium limiter. There was a reduction in recycling, as indicated by a significant decrease in the deuterium-alpha emission and oxygen radiation. How these results might extrapolate to reactors is suggested in recycling/retention experiments with liquid lithium surfaces under high-flux deuterium and helium plasma bombardment in PISCES-B. Data on deuterium atoms retained in liquid lithium indicate retention of all incident ions until full volumetric conversion to lithium deuteride. The PISCES-B results also show a material loss mechanism that lowers the maximum operating temperature compared to that for the liquid surface equilibrium vapor pressure. This may restrict the lithium temperature in reactors.

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IAEA 2003