Helicon Antenna Supports Nuclear Fusion

Humberto Torreblanca, General Atomics, USA

Built by engineers at General Atomics, the DIII-D tokamak needs to achieve temperatures that are 10 times hotter than the core of the Sun to achieve nuclear fusion. To accomplish this, a novel heating system using a helicon antenna that can inject 1 megawatt of RF power is being designed and built. Humberto Torreblanca, the DIII-D tokamak chief operator, and his team are using multiphysics simulation to model all aspects of the design, such as the magnetic field distribution inside and outside the tokamak vessel as well as the electric field distribution and RF losses of the helicon antenna.

The RF losses of the helicon antenna's stripline used to heat the DIII-D tokamak.