Characteristics of turbulence-driven plasma flow and origin of experimental empirical scalings of intrinsic rotation

Wang, W. X.; Hahm, T. S.; Ethier, S.; Diamond, P. H.; Rewoldt, G.; Tang, W. M.; Lee, W. W.
April 2011
Physics of Plasmas;Apr2011, Vol. 18 Issue 4, p042502
Academic Journal
Toroidal plasma flow driven by turbulent torque associated with nonlinear residual stress generation is shown to recover the observed key features of intrinsic rotation in experiments. Specifically, the turbulence-driven intrinsic rotation scales close to linearly with plasma gradients and the inverse of the plasma current, qualitatively reproducing empirical scalings obtained from a large experimental data base. The effect of magnetic shear on the symmetry breaking in the parallel wavenumber spectrum is identified. The origin of the current scaling is found to be the enhanced k∥ symmetry breaking induced by increased radial variation of the safety factor as the current decreases. The physics origin for the linear dependence of intrinsic rotation on the pressure gradient comes from the fact that both turbulence intensity and the zonal flow shear, which are two key ingredients for driving the residual stress, are increased with the strength of the turbulence drives, which are R/LTe and R/Lne for the collisionless trapped electron mode (CTEM). Highlighted results also include robust radial pinches in toroidal flow, heat and particle transport driven by CTEM turbulence, which emerge 'in phase,' and are shown to play important roles in determining plasma profiles. Also discussed are the experimental tests proposed to validate findings from these gyrokinetic simulations.


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