Deuterium gas-puff Z-pinch Implosions on the Z accelerator

College Park, MD: American Institute of Physics, 2007. Reprint from Physics of Plasmas 14, published online 27 April 2007. Stapled at upper left corner. 056309-1 through 056309-7. Tables Figures. Footnotes. Experiments on the Z accelerator with deuterium gas-puff implosions have produced up to 3.7×1013 (±20%) neutrons at 2.34 MeV (±0.10 MeV). Although the mechanism for generating these neutrons was not definitively identified, this neutron output is 100 times more than previously observed from neutron-producing experiments at Z. Dopant gases in the deuterium (argon and chlorine) were used to study implosion characteristics and stagnated plasma conditions through x-ray yield measurements and spectroscopy. Magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) calculations have suggested that the dopants improved the neutron output through better plasma compression, which has been studied in experiments increasing the dopant fraction. Scaling these experiments, and additional MHD calculations, suggest that approximately 5×1014 deuterium-deuterium (DD) neutrons could be generated at the 26-MA refurbished Z facility. Sandia’s Z machine is the world's most powerful and efficient laboratory radiation source. It uses high magnetic fields associated with high electrical currents to produce high temperatures, high pressures, and powerful X-rays for research in high energy density science. The Z machine creates conditions found nowhere else on Earth. Z is part of Sandia's Pulsed Power program, which began in the 1960s. Z is crucial to Sandia’s mission to ensure the reliability and safety of our nuclear stockpile as it ages – it allows scientists to study materials under conditions similar to those produced by the detonation of a nuclear weapon, and it produces key data used to validate physics models in computer simulations. High current, gas-puff Z-pinches are an excellent way to produce radiating HED plasmas in the laboratory. In a gas-puff Z-pinch plasma, the voltage across the puff initiates a breakdown in the gas and the resultant current density (J) combines with the magnetic field (B) to form the radially inward force ( J × B) that compresses the plasma onto the axis. The stagnated
hot, dense, pinched plasma provides an intense radiation source. Z-pinch plasmas are optically thick and radiation transport is of comparable importance to magneto-hydrodynamics (MHD), atomic physics, and other transport processes. Argon gas-puff implosions on the pulsed power Z generator at Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) are a demonstrated efficient source of K-shell X-rays (>3 keV).
Condition: Good.

Keywords: Deuterium, Gas-Puff, Z-pinch, Implosions, Pulsed Power, Z machine, Dopant Gases, Argon, Chlorine, Stagnated Plasma, X-ray yield, Magnetohydrodynamic, MHD

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