Thermocapillary and thermoelectric effects in liquid lithium plasma facing components

M. A. Jaworski, N. B. Morley, D. N. Ruzic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent experiments have renewed interest in the use of liquid lithium as a plasma facing component (PFC). The liquid metal surface will experience a number of effects which are considered in the present work with simple analytical and more complete computational models. These include the thermal response under fusion relevant heat loads causing thermocapillary and thermoelectric effects. Analytical solutions for simplified flow are given showing the surface velocity of these liquid metals due to thermocapillary effects in conjunction with magnetohydrodynamic drag. A parameter describing dominant conduction or convection is developed which shows that thin-films relevant to NSTX will be conduction dominated. Thermoelectric effects could propel liquid lithium with velocities of 10 s of cm/s providing a significant boost to energy transport.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1055-1058
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Nuclear Materials
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 15 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • General Materials Science
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering


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