J. Phys. IV France
Volume 133, June 2006
Page(s) 59 - 65
Published online 16 June 2006
Inertial Fusion Sciences and Applications 2005
J.-C. Gauthier, et al.
J. Phys. IV France 133 (2006) 59-65

DOI: 10.1051/jp4:2006133013

Progress in direct-drive inertial confinement fusion research at the laboratory for laser energetics

R.L. McCrory1, 2, D.D. Meyerhofer1, 2, S.J. Loucks1, S. Skupsky1, R. Betti1, 2, T.R. Boehly1, T.J.B. Collins1, R.S. Craxton1, J.A. Delettrez1, D.H. Edgell1, R. Epstein1, K.A. Fletcher3, C. Freeman3, J.A. Frenje4, V.Yu. Glebov1, V.N. Goncharov1, 2, D.R. Harding1, I.V. Igumenshchev1, R.L. Keck1, J.D. Kilkenny1, 5, J.P. Knauer1, C.K. Li4, J. Marciante1, J.A. Marozas1, F.J. Marshall1, A.V. Maximov1, P.W. McKenty1, S.F.B. Morse1, J. Myatt1, S. Padalino3, R.D. Petrasso4, P.B. Radha1, S.P. Regan1, T.C. Sangster1, F.H. Séguin4, W. Seka1, V.A. Smalyuk1, J.M. Soures1, C. Stoeckl1, B. Yaakobi1 and J.D. Zuegel1

1  Laboratory for Laser Energetics, University of Rochester, 250 East River Road, Rochester, NY 14623-1299, USA
2  Departments of Mechanical Engineering and Physics and Astronomy, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA
3  SUNY Geneseo, Geneseo, NY, USA
4  Plasma Science and Fusion Center, MIT, Cambridge, MA, USA
5  General Atomics, San Diego, CA, USA

Direct-drive inertial confinement fusion (ICF) is expected to demonstrate high gain on the National Ignition Facility (NIF) in the next decade and is a leading candidate for inertial fusion energy production. The demonstration of high areal densities in hydrodynamically scaled cryogenic DT or D2 implosions with neutron yields that are a significant fraction of the "clean" 1-D predictions will validate the ignition-equivalent direct-drive target performance on the OMEGA laser at the Laboratory for Laser Energetics (LLE). This paper highlights some of the recent experimental and theoretical progress toward this validation.

The NIF will initially be configured for x-ray drive and with no beams placed at the target equator to provide a symmetric irradiation of a direct-drive capsule. LLE is developing the "polar-direct-drive" (PDD) approach that repoints beams toward the target equator. Initial 2-D simulations have shown ignition.

LLE is currently constructing the multibeam, 2.6-kJ/beam, petawatt laser system OMEGA EP. Integrated fast-ignition experiments, combining the OMEGA EP and OMEGA laser systems, will begin in FY08.

© EDP Sciences 2006