Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


Normal curvature, local magnetic shear and parallel current density in tokamaks and torsatrons are discussed in this paper. Reversed magnetic shear is associated with large negative surface averaged parallel current densities that increase in magnitude towards the plasma edge and guarantee stability at large beta in tokamaks. The surface averaged parallel current density is smaller and decreases in magnitude radially in conventional shear tokamaks. This results in much lower magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) stable beta. The parallel current density in torsatrons is dominated by the Pfirsch-Schlüter currents, the global shear contributes negligibly to the local shear, and the beta limits are comparable to that of a conventional tokamak. A simplistic evaluation of the local sign of the driving terms in the energy principle does not provide a useful guide to even qualitatively describe the MHD stability of a device. Ballooning instabilities concentrate in regions where the curvature is most destabilizing. The localization of these instabilities does not appear to depend on the sign of the interaction between the parallel current density and the local magnetic shear contribution to the driving term.

Additional information

Authors: COOPER W A, Centre de Recherches en Physique des Plasmas, Association Euratom-Confédération Suisse, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (CH)
Bibliographic Reference: Article: Physics of Plasmas (1996) 31pp.
Record Number: 199610852 / Last updated on: 1996-08-16
Original language: en
Available languages: en