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With the stimulus of the requirement for high power, high energy hydrogen ion beam sources as the basis of neutral beam injectors for fusion research, the development of such sources over the past two decades has been quite spectacular. The article briefly explains the background to this work and reviews progress since the early 1970s, with particular emphasis on ion source development within the UK. This progress has been based on studies of the physical processes underlying the creation of these intense beams of positive or negative ions, as well as the advanced engineering needed to turn these concepts into reality. As a result, the Culham Laboratory and JET, together with the CEA at Cadarache, have demonstrated that neutral beams are an extremely successful method of injecting high powers into tokamaks to obtain thermonuclear ignition in a plasma.

Additional information

Authors: HEMSWORTH R S, JET Joint Undertaking, Abingdon, Oxon. (GB);HOLMES A J T, UKAEA, Culham Laboratory, Abingdon, Oxon. (GB)
Bibliographic Reference: Report: JET-P(90)52 EN (1990) 60 pp.
Availability: Available from the Publications Officer, JET Joint Undertaking, Abingdon, Oxon. OX14 3EA (GB)
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