J. Phys. IV France
Volume 10, Numéro PR5, March 2000
The 1999 International Conference on Strongly Coupled Coulomb Systems
Page(s) Pr5-65 - Pr5-72
The 1999 International Conference on Strongly Coupled Coulomb Systems

J. Phys. IV France 10 (2000) Pr5-65-Pr5-72

DOI: 10.1051/jp4:2000508

The role of strong coupling in z-pinch-driven approaches to high yield inertial confinement fusion

T.A. Mehlhorn1, M. Desjarlais1, T.A. Haill1, J.S. Lash1, S.E. Rosenthal1, S.A. Slutz1, P.H. Stoltz1, R.A. Vesey1 and B. Oliver2

1  Sandia National Laboratories, P.O. Box 5800, MS-1186, Albuquerque, NM 87185-1186, U.S.A.
2  Mission Research Corporation, 5001 Indian School Rd. NE, Albuquerque, NM 87106-3946, U.S.A.

Peak x-ray powers as high as 280±40 TW have been generated from the implosion of tungsten wire arrays on the Z Accelerator at Sandia National Laboratories. The high x-ray powers radiated by these z-pinches provide an attractive new driver option for high yield inertial confinement fusion (ICF). The high x-ray powers appear to be a result of using a large number of wires in the array which decreases the perturbation seed to the magnetic Rayleigh-Taylor (MRT ) instability and diminishes other 3-D effects. Simulations to confirm this hypothesis require a 3-D MHD code capability, and associated databases, to follow the evolution of the wires from cold solid through melt, vaporization, ionization, and finally to dense imploded plasma. Strong coupling plays a role in this process, the importance of which depends on the wire material and the current time history of the pulsed power driver. Strong coupling regimes are involved in the plasmas in the convolute and transmission line of the powerflow system. Strong coupling can also play a role in the physics of the z-pinch-driven high yield ICF target. Finally, strong coupling can occur in certain z-pinch-driven application experiments.

© EDP Sciences 2000