Simulation of runaway electron generation during plasma shutdown by impurity injection in ITER
Journal article, 2011
Disruptions in a large tokamak can cause serious damage to the device and should be avoided or mitigated. Massive gas or killer pellet injection are possible ways to obtain a controlled fast plasma shutdown before a natural disruption occurs. In this work, plasma shutdown scenarios with different types of impurities are studied for an ITER-like plasma. Plasma cooling, runaway generation and the associated electric field diffusion are calculated with a 1D-code taking the Dreicer, hot-tail and avalanche runaway generation processes into account. Thin, radially localized sheets with high temperature can be created after the thermal quench, and the Dreicer and avalanche processes produce a high runaway current inside these sheets. At high impurity concentration the Dreicer process is suppressed but hot-tail runaways are created. Favorable thermal and current quench times can be achieved with a mixture of deuterium and neon or argon. However, to prevent the avalanche process from creating a significant runaway current fraction, it is found to be necessary to include runaway losses in the model.