Annual report 2009-2010
The Super Science Initiative Scheme, announced in the 2009-10 Federal Budget, provided for a major infrastructure upgrade to the H-1 facility, which is now known as the Australian Plasma Fusion Research Facility (the Facility). The proposed outcomes of this financial support are:
- Significant improvements to the plasma formation and heating systems, vacuum systems and plasma diagnostic and data systems.
- Enhanced accessibility of plasma data and diagnostic information.
- Dual use of heating, magnet supply and diagnostic systems with a new high power and high plasma density Materials Diagnostic Development Facility (MDF).
- The development of diagnostic tools, which it is hoped, will ultimately be installed on the international fusion experiment ITER, identified as a central plank of the “Strategy for Australian Fusion Science and Engineering” developed by the Australian ITER Forum in consultation with the Australian fusion community.
All upgrade project milestones for this year were met on time, including detailed planning of the upgrade, and first steps of the heating, diagnostic, data system and safety upgrades. These include:
- Procurement of a power amplifier system to upgrade the radiofrequency (RF) plasma heating system for installation in 2011-12.
- Work has begun on the design of upgrades to the RF transmission and launching system.
- A detailed plan for the Fire Protection upgrade was developed and implemented in all areas except the transmitter hall. The fire protection for this area will be upgraded during the radiofrequency source upgrade.
- A scoping study for a small-scale electron heating system.
- Significant upgrades to diagnostics include the recent installation of a new high speed fluctuation-imaging camera.
Central to our aim of improving access to experimental data is the upgrade of the data server, acquisition hardware and experiment timing systems.
- The existing experimental database is undergoing a total redesign to improve accessibility to new users without detailed knowledge of the data structures.
- A new web interface provides a simple means of data access, and efficient server protocols will soon allow access to more detailed data for more complete analysis.
Additional staff have been recruited, including two short term appointments to assist in assessment of heating and database options. The filling of three fixed term positions to perform work on the upgrade of the diagnostic system and databases is currently underway.