Description: This paper reviews the status of the reversed-field pinch (RFP) approach to the development of a compact nuclear fusion reactor. Two RFP papers in this conference are complementary; the first paper contains the historical origins and basic concepts concerning MHD instabilities, relaxation and RFP confinement properties as well as a discussion of future prospects of the RFP. This paper gives an overview of the status of plasma parameters of the present main RFP experiments and of the status of theory and experiment of the interesting RFP plasma phenomena of relaxation, self reversal and flux generation (these effects are often referred to as the dynamo effect). The low frequency oscillating-field current drive concept which exploits these effects is discussed. Particular emphasis is given to the theoretical results obtained from plasma simulation codes used in these active areas of study. Selected topics of recent research on the Los Alamos ZT-40M experiments are reported. The paper concludes with descriptions of the next generation Los Alamos RFP experiment ZTH, to be located in the new Confinement Physics Research Facility (CPRF) presently under construction, and the characteristics of an RFP compact reactor. 68 refs.
Date: January 1, 1987
Creator: Baker, D.A.
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