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Diagnostics for Fast Ignition Science

Description: The concept for Electron Fast Ignition Inertial Confinement Fusion demands sufficient laser energy be transferred from the ignitor pulse to the assembled fuel core via {approx}MeV electrons. We have assembled a suite of diagnostics to characterize such transfer. Recent experiments have simultaneously fielded absolutely calibrated extreme ultraviolet multilayer imagers at 68 and 256eV; spherically bent crystal imagers at 4 and 8keV; multi-keV crystal spectrometers; MeV x-ray bremmstrahlung and electron and proton spectrometers (along the same line of sight); nuclear activation samples and a picosecond optical probe based interferometer. These diagnostics allow careful measurement of energy transport and deposition during and following laser-plasma interactions at extremely high intensities in both planar and conical targets. Augmented with accurate on-shot laser focal spot and pre-pulse characterization, these measurements are yielding new insight into energy coupling and are providing critical data for validating numerical PIC and hybrid PIC simulation codes in an area that is crucial for many applications, particularly fast ignition. Novel aspects of these diagnostics and how they are combined to extract quantitative data on ultra high intensity laser plasma interactions are discussed, together with implications for full-scale fast ignition experiments.
Date: May 6, 2008
Creator: MacPhee, A; Akli, K; Beg, F; Chen, C; Chen, H; Clarke, R et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Measuring the absolute DT neutron yield using the Magnetic Recoil Spectrometer at OMEGA and the NIF

Description: A Magnetic Recoil Spectrometer (MRS) has been installed and extensively used on OMEGA and the National Ignition Facility (NIF) for measurements of the absolute neutron spectrum from inertial confinement fusion (ICF) implosions. From the neutron spectrum measured with the MRS, many critical implosion parameters are determined including the primary DT neutron yield, the ion temperature, and the down-scattered neutron yield. As the MRS detection efficiency is determined from first principles, the absolute DT neutron yield is obtained without cross-calibration to other techniques. The MRS primary DT neutron measurements at OMEGA and the NIF are shown to be in excellent agreement with previously established yield diagnostics on OMEGA, and with the newly commissioned nuclear activation diagnostics on the NIF.
Date: May 3, 2012
Creator: Mackinnon, A; Casey, D; Frenje, J A; Johnson, M G; Seguin, F H; Li, C K et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

A novel particle Time Of Flight (pTOF) diagnostic for measurements of shock- and compression-bang times in D3He and DT implosions at the NIF

Description: The particle-time-of-flight (pTOF) diagnostic, fielded alongside a Wedge Range-Filter (WRF) proton spectrometer, will provide an absolute timing for the shock-burn weighted {rho}R measurements that will validate the modeling of implosion dynamics at the National Ignition Facility (NIF). In the first phase of the project, pTOF has recorded accurate bang times in cryogenic DT, DT-Exploding Pusher and D{sup 3}He implosions using DD or DT neutrons with an accuracy better than {+-}70 ps. In the second phase of the project, a deflecting magnet will be incorporated into the pTOF design for simultaneous measurements of shock- and compression-bang times in D{sup 3}He-filled surrogate implosions using D{sup 3}He protons and DD-neutrons, respectively.
Date: May 2, 2012
Creator: Mackinnon, A; Rinderknecht, H G; Johnson, M G; Zylstra, A B; Sinenian, N; Rosenbergh, M J et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

A Dual Channel X-ray Spectrometer for Fast Ignition Research

Description: A new Dual Channel Highly Ordered Pyrolytic Graphite (DC-HOPG) x-ray spectrometer was developed to study laser-generated electron beam transport. The instrument uses a pair of graphite crystals and has the advantage of simultaneously detecting self emission from low-Z materials in first diffraction order and high-Z materials in second order. The emissions from the target are detected using a pair of parallel imaging plates positioned in a such way that the noise from background is minimized and the mosaic focusing is achieved. Initial tests of the diagnostic on Titan laser (I {approx} 10{sup 20} W/cm{sup 2}, {tau} = 0.7 ps) show excellent signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) > 1000 for the low energy channel and SNR > 400 for the high energy channel.
Date: April 19, 2010
Creator: Akli, K U; Patel, P K; Van Maren, R; Stephens, R B; Key, M H; Higginson, D P et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Hot Electron Generation and Transport Using K(alpha) Emission

Description: We have conducted experiments on both the Vulcan and Titan laser facilities to study hot electron generation and transport in the context of fast ignition. Cu wires attached to Al cones were used to investigate the effect on coupling efficiency of plasma surround and the pre-formed plasma inside the cone. We found that with thin cones 15% of laser energy is coupled to the 40{micro}m diameter wire emulating a 40{micro}m fast ignition spot. Thick cone walls, simulating plasma in fast ignition, reduce coupling by x4. An increase of prepulse level inside the cone by a factor of 50 reduces coupling by a factor of 3.
Date: October 15, 2009
Creator: Akli, K U; Stephens, R B; Key, M H; Bartal, T; Beg, F N; Chawla, S et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Neutron spectrometry - An essential tool for diagnosing implosions at the National Ignition Facility

Description: DT neutron yield (Y{sub n}), ion temperature (T{sub i}) and down-scatter ratio (dsr) determined from measured neutron spectra are essential metrics for diagnosing the performance of Inertial Confinement Fusion (ICF) implosions at the National Ignition Facility (NIF). A suite of neutron-Time-Of-Flight (nTOF) spectrometers and a Magnetic Recoil Spectrometer (MRS) have been implemented in different locations around the NIF target chamber, providing good implosion coverage and the redundancy required for reliable measurements of Yn, Ti and dsr. From the measured dsr value, an areal density ({rho}R) is determined from the relationship {rho}R{sub tot} (g/cm{sup 2}) = (20.4 {+-} 0.6) x dsr{sub 10-12 MeV}. The proportionality constant is determined considering implosion geometry, neutron attenuation and energy range used for the dsr measurement. To ensure high accuracy in the measurements, a series of commissioning experiments using exploding pushers have been used for in situ calibration. The spectrometers are now performing to the required accuracy, as indicated by the good agreement between the different measurements over several commissioning shots. In addition, recent data obtained with the MRS and nTOFs indicate that the implosion performance of cryogenically layered DT implosions, characterized by the experimental Ignition Threshold Factor (ITFx) which is a function of dsr (or fuel {rho}R) and Y{sub n}, has improved almost two orders of magnitude since the first shot in September, 2010.
Date: May 2, 2012
Creator: Mackinnon, A J; Johnson, M G; Frenje, J A; Casey, D T; Li, C K; Seguin, F H et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department