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Award Status: Active
  • Institution: Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA
  • DUNS: 808264444
  • Most Recent Award Date: 07/08/2022
  • Number of Support Periods: 9
  • PM: Lanctot, Matthew
  • Current Budget Period: 07/15/2021 - 07/14/2023
  • Current Project Period: 07/15/2019 - 07/14/2023
  • PI: Schuster-Rosa, Eugenio
  • Supplement Budget Period: N/A

Public Abstract

Toward ITER-like Advanced-Scenario Control Integration in DIII-D 

Eugenio Schuster, Lehigh University (Principal Investigator) 


The realization and sustainment of advanced plasma scenarios for ITER (e.g., inductive scenario, steady-state scenario) and future fusion reactors (e.g., highly shaped, high-βN scenarios) demand robust integrated control of a large number of plasma properties. In particular, active control of the current profile, together with appropriate rotation and pressure profile control, has been demonstrated to be a key condition for the realization and sustainment of advanced plasma scenarios characterized by improved confinement, enhanced magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) stability, and possible steady-state operation. The control of the plasma spatial profiles arises as one of the most challenging control problems due to the high dimensionality and nonlinearity exhibited by the burning plasma. A model-based approach emerges as the only possible way of tackling this challenging, nonlinear, high-dimensional, control-design problem, while enabling control integration, actuator sharing, real-time optimization, and MHD-instability avoidance.


The Lehigh University (LU) Plasma Control Group (PCG) has pioneered many control-oriented modeling and control-design techniques for advanced scenario control, strongly impacting not only DIII-D but also major experiments around the world (techniques developed at DIII-D have been and are being extended to NSTX-U, EAST, KSTAR, and ITER). In spite of the significant progress achieved, a great deal of research work is still needed for these advanced-scenario control solutions to reach the level of completeness, integration, and reliability required for ITER and future fusion reactors. Building upon recent achievements, new and ongoing research work on both control mathematics and control physics will be conducted to continue LU-PCG’s educational and research project on integrated advanced-scenario control. The overall objective of this effort is to continue and extend our work on integration of physics and operation in DIII-D, with the ultimate goals of increasing the physics productivity of experimental time by providing improved and expanded control capability for ongoing and future operation, developing solutions to several challenging control problems expected in ITER and future fusion reactors, and contributing to the resolution of important physics issues related to burning plasmas and advanced scenarios.


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