Acceleration of Solid Hydrogen Pellet using Augmented Railgun for Magnetic Fusion Reactor Refueling

J. Zhang, Kyekyoon Kim, T. L. King

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

A 1.2-m long electromagnetic railgun with separate augmentation was designed, fabricated, and tested for the purpose of injecting hypervelocity hydrogen pellets into magnetic fusion devices for refueling. A compact configuration of two pairs of coaxial rails insulated by thin Kapton film was employed. Two pulse-forming networks were used to separately control the duration, amplitude, and overlap of the current pulses. Copper sulphate resistors were employed as impedance-matching resistors and bank short resistors. The magnetic field inside the gun bore was boosted by the high current on the augmentation rails, which in turn increased the J × B force without increasing the armature current, resulting in less ablation of the gun bore and pellet. Higher acceleration was achieved due to reduced inertial and viscous drag. Using a 1.2-m augmented railgun, hydrogen pellet velocities in excess of 2.5 km/s were achieved. Hydrogen pellet accelerations as high as 4.4×106 m/s2 were achieved at a railgun current of 13.5 kA while the acceleration obtained on a conventional railgun was 2.2×106 m/s2 at 14.1 kA. Computer simulations have been performed using the finite element code MSC/EMAS to analyze the current density, magnetic field, Lorentz force, and inductance gradient of the conventional and augmented railguns.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)382-387
Number of pages6
JournalIEEE Transactions on Magnetics
Volume31
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1995

Fingerprint

Reactor refueling
Rail guns
Fusion reactors
Hydrogen
Resistors
Rails
Magnetic fields
Copper Sulfate
Lorentz force
Ablation
Inductance
Drag
Current density
Fusion reactions
Copper
Thin films
Computer simulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

Cite this

Acceleration of Solid Hydrogen Pellet using Augmented Railgun for Magnetic Fusion Reactor Refueling. / Zhang, J.; Kim, Kyekyoon; King, T. L.

In: IEEE Transactions on Magnetics, Vol. 31, No. 1, 01.1995, p. 382-387.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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