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A new diagnostic technique, based on elastic scattering of neutral atoms off the plasma ions, is proposed and analyzed. Space and time resolved measurements of the number densities and temperatures of the various components of the plasma are possible by energy analysis of the scattered neutral atoms. The ability to resolve ions of different masses is limited by ion thermal motion and the energy and angular dependence of the scattering cross sections. In hydrogenic plasmas with impurities, the scattering by the impurities is easily resolvable from the scattering of protons, even when the individual impurity contributions cannot be separately resolved. Detected particle count rates are calculated for a conceputal system for a tokamak plasma (n ~ 1013 cm-3, Ti ~ 300 eV). Time resolution of ~ 10 ms with spatial resolution of a few cm are predicted.
Date of Publication: June 1978