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Simulations of a Plasma Flow Switch

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5 Author(s)

In a portion of the experimental program using the SHIVA Star capacitor bank at the Air Force Weapons Laboratory (AFWL), a cylindrical foil load is imploded using an inductive store and a plasma flow switch. We have performed a number of two-dimensional simulations of the switch and load using the MHD code MACH2. In addition to explaining the data from the first series of experiments, the simulations led to design modifications of the basic plasma flow switch that resulted in improved current delivery and in enhanced radiation yield. The experimental results are reported in a companion paper by Degnan et al. The key modification was closing portions of the vane structure. The switch must be sealed shut or else substantial current will flow in the diffuse gas that is ablated from the walls of the switch barrel.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Plasma Science  (Volume:15 ,  Issue: 6 )