Developing advanced concepts for the extraction of negative ions from non-equilibrium plasmas (plasma strand project) – accepting applications

Supervisors: James Dedrick (University of York) and Timo Gans (University of York)

The development of advanced ion sources is of significant interest for many technological applications, including neutral beam injectors for the heating of next-generation magnetic confinement fusion reactors, thrust generation for electric propulsion, and materials research including advanced manufacturing using focused ion beams.

Currently, high density ion sources can be effectively generated using non-equilibrium, low-temperature plasmas. However, a major challenge remains in the efficient extraction of ions. The aim of this project is to address this challenge through the development of advanced ion-extraction concepts.  During this project, innovative ion extraction control techniques based on fundamentally different concepts than conventional approaches will be developed.

While the structure of the project can be flexible to the candidate’s research background and aspirations, we envisage the incorporation of both experimental and plasma simulation components. Experimental measurements can include the application of ultrafast optical emission spectroscopy (electron dynamics), two-photon absorption laser induced fluorescence laser spectroscopy (atomic densities) and laser photo-detachment (negative ions) to enable validation of a 2D fluid-kinetic simulation. Once validated we can apply the simulation to investigate new approaches for efficiently extracting negative ions.

We are highly supportive of prospects to pursue research at international laboratories within the frame of our existing collaborations in France, Germany, Australia, and USA.

This project can include the operation of optical, e.g. laser spectroscopy, ultrafast optical emission spectroscopy, and electrical measurement and control techniques together with the application of state-of-art art, 2D fluid-kinetic plasma simulation code.

This project is offered by University of York. For more information please contact James Dedrick: james.dedrick@york.ac.uk

Image above: Example of a low-temperature hydrogen plasma operating in a high-density H-mode. Clear optical access to the plasma enables non-invasive measurements including spatially resolved laser spectroscopy and ultrafast optical emission spectroscopy. These measurements of the charged and neutral particle dynamics can then be compared with numerical simulations developed in parallel.