Description: Global stability of field-reversed configuration (FRC) plasmas has been studied using a simple rigid body model in the parameter space ofs (ratio of separatrix radius to average ion gyroradius) and plasma elongation E (ratio of separatrix length to separatrix diameter). Tilt stability is predicted, independent of s, for FRC`s with low E(oblate), while the tilt stability of FRC`s with large E (prolate)depends on s/E. It is found that plasma rotation due to ion diamagnetic drift can stabilize the tilt mode when s/E is less than or equal to1.7. The so-called collisionless ion gyroviscosity also is identified to stabilize tilt when s/E is less than or equal to 2.2. Combining these two effects, the stability regime broadens to s/E is less than or equal to 2.8, consistent with previously developed theories. A small additional rotation (e.g., a Mach number of 0.2) can improve tilt stability significantly at large E. A similar approach is taken to study the physics of the shift stability. It is found that radial shift is unstable when E is < 1 WHILE AXIAL SHIFT IS UNSTABLE WHEN E is> 1. However, unlike tilt stability, gyroviscosity has little effect onshift stability.
Date: April 1998
Creator: Ji, H.
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