60 Years of neutral particle analysis: from early tokamaks to ITER
Ioffe Institute, 194021, Saint Petersburg, Russia
2 Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University, 195251, Saint Petersburg, Russia
Accepted: 15 January 2021
Published online: 19 March 2021
Academician A. D. Sakharov’s idea concerning the emission of atomic flux from hot plasma (1951) inspired scientists of A. F. Ioffe Physico-Technical Institute to create the first in the world instrument called Neutral Atom Analyzer in 1960 and then in 1961 to use it successfully on the Alpha device (USSR, 1958–1963). Now the analysis of fluxes of fast atoms referred to as Neutral Particle Analysis (NPA) is one of the main diagnostic methods for the ion component of plasma in tokamaks, stellarators, and other devices. NPA provides a unique opportunity for studying the ion distribution functions, ion temperatures and hydrogen isotope ratio in hot plasma. Neutral particle analyzers developed at the Ioffe Institute were widely used in the USSR until the late 1970s, and afterwards began to be employed worldwide. Since then, most of the information on the ion distribution functions and the behavior of fast ions in fusion plasma is obtained from NPA measurements on all leading magnetic confinement fusion systems worldwide. The specialized complex of atom analyzers currently being created at the Ioffe Institute is included in the primary list of ITER diagnostics. The integration of this complex on ITER is expected to begin in 2025.
© The Author(s), under exclusive licence to EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2021