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Fluid, kinetic and hybrid approaches for neutral and trace ion edge transport modelling in fusion devices

Tijdschriftbijdrage - Tijdschriftartikel

Neutral gas physics and neutral interactions with the plasma are key aspects of edge plasma and divertor physics in a fusion reactor including the detachment phenomenon often seen as key to dealing with the power exhaust challenges. A full physics description of the neutral gas dynamics requires a 6D kinetic approach, potentially time dependent, where the details of the wall geometry play a substantial role, to the extent that, e.g., the subdivertor region has to be included. The Monte Carlo (MC) approach used for about 30 years in EIRENE [1], is well suited to solve these types of complex problems. Indeed, the MC approach allows simulating the 6D kinetic equation without having to store the velocity distribution on a 6D grid, at the cost of introducing statistical noise. MC also provides very good flexibility in terms of geometry and atomic and molecular (A&M) processes. However, it becomes computationally extremely demanding in high-collisional regions (HCR) as anticipated in ITER and DEMO. Parallelization on particles helps reducing the simulation wall clock time, but to provide speed-up in situations where single trajectories potentially involve a very large number of A&M events, it is important to derive a hierarchy of models in terms of accuracy and to clearly identify for what type of physics issues they provide reliable answers. It was demonstrated that advanced fluid neutral (AFN) models are very accurate in HCRs, and at least an order of magnitude faster than fully kinetic simulations. Based on these fluid models, three hybrid fluid-kinetic approaches are introduced: a spatially hybrid technique (SpH), a micro-Macro hybrid method (mMH), and an asymptotic-preserving MC (APMC) scheme, to combine the efficiency of a fluid model with the accuracy of a kinetic description. In addition, atomic and molecular ions involved in the edge plasma chemistry can also be treated kinetically within the MC solver, opening the way for further hybridisation by enabling kinetic impurity ion transport calculations. This paper aims to give an overview of methods mentioned and suggests the most prospective combinations to be developed.
Tijdschrift: Nuclear Fusion
ISSN: 0029-5515
Issue: 8
Volume: 62
Jaar van publicatie:2022