Modelling for JET Vertical Stabilization System
Bellizio, Teresa (2010) Modelling for JET Vertical Stabilization System. [Tesi di dottorato] (Inedito)
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Nuclear fusion is, in a sense, the opposite of nuclear fission. Fission, which is a mature technology, produces energy through the splitting of heavy atoms like uranium in controlled chain reactions. Unfortunately, the by-products of fission are highly radioactive and long lasting. On the other hand, fusion is the process by which the nuclei of two light atoms such as hydrogen are fused together to form a heavier (helium) nucleus, with energy produced as a by-product. Although controlled fusion is extremely technologically challenging, a fusion-power reactor would offer significant advantages over existing energy sources. This thesis is devoted to the control of tokamaks, magnetic confinement devices constructed in the shape of a torus (or doughnut). Tokamaks are the most promising of several proposed magnetic confinement devices. The need to improve the performance of modern tokamak operations has led to a further development of the plasma shape and position control systems. In particular, extremely elongated plasmas, with high vertical-instability growth rate, are envisaged to reach the required performance for ignition. This request for better performance from the experimentalists’ side has motivated the development of the new vertical-stabilization (VS) system at the JET tokamak, which has been proposed within the Plasma Control Upgrade project. This thesis presents the activity carried out to increase the capability of the VS system and to understand the operational limits in order to assess what can be done to improve the overall performance with the existing hardware and control system so as to minimize the impact on JET operation. The first objective of this work is the analysis of the new diagnostic system and the influence of the mechanical structure on the magnetic measurements used as diagnostics by the VS controller; the main focus is on the influence on the controller performance in the presence of large perturbations. The second objective is to design a new controlled variable to increase the performance of the VS system. The third objective is to provide an equivalent model of an ELM (Edge Localized Mode), in terms of internal plasma profile parameters via best fit of the vertical velocity estimation. The last objective is to obtain a reliable and accurate model of the overall system, based on the new platform MARTe, developed at JET and useful also for other devices.
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