Executive Summary of Project Goals

Physics to be investigated

This research integrates the most important physical processes on overlapping temporal and spatial scales to study

  • transitions and power thresholds for enhanced confinement regimes,
  • the predictive understanding of edge pedestal formation, structure and dynamics,
  • the effect of the edge plasma on the core confinement,
  • the physics of Edge Localized Modes (ELM) and their suppression or mitigation via external control techniques, and
  • the heat load on the material wall.

Our approach will implement physical models that are valid in collisional regimes relevant to current experiments and future burning plasma devices. Comparisons with experimental data will be made at multiple levels including characterization of turbulence dynamics, flux-gradient responses in the energy, particle and momentum channels, L-H transitions, momentum generation, ELM dynamics, ELM-free regimes, and the tokamak density limit. The team has established strong connections, through joint membership with organizations that will be critical to achieving success, including the FASTMath, SDAV, SUPER, and QUEST Institutes. The joint activities include development of meshing tools, solvers and algorithms, data management and visualization, code performance tuning, uncertainty quantification, and more. We will also be teaming up with ongoing fusion SciDAC Centers: The Center for Extended MHD Modeling (CEMM) for the M3D MHD simulations and the Center for Simulation of Wave Plasma Interactions (CSWPI) for radiofrequency (RF)-edge plasmas interactions. The team includes representatives from each of the major U.S. experimental facilities who will coordinate the validation program and the development of synthetic diagnostics.