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Calculation and experimental test of the cooling factor of tungsten

Putterich, T. and Neu, R. and Dux, R. and Whiteford, A. D. and O'Mullane, M.G. and Summers, H.P. (2010) Calculation and experimental test of the cooling factor of tungsten. Nuclear Fusion, 50 (2). ISSN 0029-5515

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The cooling factor of W is evaluated using state of the art data for line radiation and an ionization balance which has been benchmarked with experiment. For the calculation of line radiation, level-resolved calculations were performed with the Cowan code to obtain the electronic structure and excitation cross sections ( plane-wave Born approximation). The data were processed by a collisional radiative model to obtain electron density dependent emissions. These data were then combined with the radiative power derived from recombination rates and bremsstrahlung to obtain the total cooling factor. The effect of uncertainties in the recombination rates on the cooling factor was studied and was identified to be of secondary importance. The new cooling factor is benchmarked, by comparisons of the line radiation with spectral measurements as well as with a direct measurement of the cooling factor. Additionally, a less detailed calculation using a configuration averaged model was performed. It was used to benchmark the level-resolved calculations and to improve the prediction on radiation power from line radiation for ionization stages which are computationally challenging. The obtained values for the cooling factor validate older predictions from the literature. Its ingredients and the absolute value are consistent with the existing experimental results regarding the value itself, the spectral distribution of emissions and the ionization equilibrium. A table of the cooling factor versus electron temperature is provided. Finally, the cooling factor is used to investigate the operational window of a fusion reactor with W as intrinsic impurity. The minimum value of nT tau(E), for which a thermonuclear burn is possible, is increased by 20% for a W concentration of 3.0 x 10(-5) compared with a plasma without any impurities, except for the He ash which is considered in both cases.