Overview of KSTAR research progress and future plans toward ITER and K-DEMO

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A decade-long operation of the Korean Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Research (KSTAR) has contributed significantly to the operation of superconducting tokamak devices and the advancement of tokamak physics which will be beneficial for the ITER and K-DEMO programs. Even with limited heating capability, various conventional as well as new operating regimes have been explored and have achieved improved performance. As examples, a long pulse high-confinement mode operation with and without an edge-localized mode (ELM) crash was well over 70 and 30s, respectively. The unique capabilities of KSTAR allowed it to improve the capability of controlling harmful instabilities, and they have been instrumental in uncovering much new physics. The highlights are that the L/H transition threshold power is sensitive to the resonant magnetic perturbation (RMP) and insensitive to non-resonant magnetic perturbation. Co-I-p offset rotation dominated by an electron channel predicted by general neoclassical toroidal viscosity theory was confirmed. Improved heat dispersal in a divertor system using three rows of rotating RMP was demonstrated and predictive control of the ELM-crash with a priori modeling was successfully tested. In magnetohydrodynamic physics, validation of the full reconnection model (i.e. q(0) > 1 right after the sawtooth crash) and self-consistent validation of the anisotropic distribution of turbulence amplitude and flow in the presence of the 2 / 1 island with theoretical models were achieved. The turbulence amplitude induced by RMP was linearly increased with the slow RMP coil current ramp-up time (i.e. the magnetic diffusion time scale). The D-alpha, spikes (i.e. ELM-crash amplitude) was linearly decreased with the turbulence amplitude and not correlated with the perpendicular electron flow. In the turbulence area, a non-diffusive 'avalanche' transport event and the role of a quiescent coherent mode in confinement were studied. To accommodate the anticipation of a higher performance of the KSTAR plasmas with the increased heating powers, a new divertor/internal interface with a full active cooling system will be implemented after a full test of the new heating (neutral beam injection II and electron cyclotron heating) and current drive (CD) (Helicon and lower hybrid CD) systems. An upgrade plan for the internal hardware, heating systems and efficient CD system may allow for a long pulse operation of higher performance plasmas at beta(N) > 3.0 with f(b)(s) similar to 0.5 and 7(i) > 10 keV.
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NUCLEAR FUSION, v.59, no.11

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NE-Journal Papers(저널논문)
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