Acceleration of high energy ions was observed in z-pinches and dense plasma foci as early as the 1950s. Even though many theories have been suggested, the ion acceleration mechanism remains a source of controversy. Recently, the experiments on the GIT-12 generator demonstrated acceleration of ions up to 30 MeV from a deuterium gas-puff z-pinch. High deuteron energies enable us to obtain unique information about spatial, spectral and temporal properties of accelerated ions. In particular, the off-axis ion emission from concentric circles of a ∼1 cm diameter and the radial lines in an ion beam profile are germane for the discussion of acceleration mechanisms. The acceleration of 30 MeV deuterons can be explained by the fast increase of an impedance with a sub-nanosecond e-folding time. The high (>10 Ω) impedance is attributed to a space-charge limited flow after the effective ejection of plasmas from m = 0 constrictions. Detailed knowledge of the ion acceleration mechanism is used with a neutron-producing catcher to increase neutron yields above 1013 at a current of 2.7 MA.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)