Plasma wave simulation based on a versatile finite element method solver

Shiraiwa, S.; Meneghini, O.; Parker, R.; Bonoli, P.; Garrett, M.; Kaufman, M. C.; Wright, J. C.; Wukitch, S.
May 2010
Physics of Plasmas;May2010, Vol. 17 Issue 5, p056119
Academic Journal
The possibility of plasma wave simulation based on the finite element method (FEM) was explored, and a new full wave simulation code of the lower hybrid (LH) wave, Lower Hybrid wavE Analysis based on FEM (LHEAF), was developed. The efficient iterative solver for the LH wave [O. Meneghini, S. Shiraiwa, and R. Parker, Phys. Plasmas 16, 090701 (2009)] was coupled to one-dimensional Fokker–Planck calculation to obtain the self-consistent distribution function. In LHEAF, seamless handling of the core, scrape off layer, and antenna regions were realized and the wave launching structure were naturally included into the simulation. Simulation results of a Maxwellian tokamak plasma showed good agreement with ray tracing calculations and the TORIC-LH spectral solver [J. C. Wright, P. T. Bonoli, A. E. Schmidt et al., Phys. Plasmas 16, 072502 (2009)]. Compared to spectral domain solvers, the computational requirements are reduced significantly, allowing an Alcator C [M. Porkolab, J. J. Schuss, B. Lloyd et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 53, 450 (1984)] scale plasma simulation on a desktop computer. Also, the LH full wave simulation of an ITER scale plasma was demonstrated for the first time with moderate increase in the problem size. In addition, the flexibility of the FEM approach has been exploited to address issues of antenna-plasma coupling in the LH and ion cyclotron range of frequencies (ICRF). Techniques using the FEM package for this purpose were validated on the traditional grill antenna and have been applied to the interdigital-line antenna of LH wave. Application to the near field analysis of the new Alcator C-Mod [I. H. Hutchinson, R. Boivin, F. Bombarda et al., Phys. Plasmas 1, 1511 (1994)] ICRF antenna is in progress.


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