Experiments were performed in the Pilot-PSI linear plasma device to study the formation of helium-induced nanostructures under high heat fluxes (>10 MW m-2), the erosion of a tungsten surface at the elevated temperatures where those structures typically form and most importantly the behavior of a helium-induced fibreform structure during ELM-like pulses. A strong correlation between the characteristic size of the helium-induced morphology and the size of the voids observed in the near-surface region has been found, and both increase in size with increasing temperatures. Temperature-dependent erosion of tungsten surfaces was observed despite the ion energy being below the sputtering threshold, with an exponential increase of the erosion for temperatures higher than 2400 °C. The same effect was observed during ELM-like plasma pulses. Finally, a complete disappearance of the tungsten fibreform structure was observed after only one plasma pulse for energy densities higher than 0.5 MJ m-2.
De Temmerman, G. C., Bystrov, K. E., Doerner, R. P., Marot, L., Wright, G. M., Woller, K. B., Whyte, D. G., & Zielinski, J. J. (2013). Helium effects on tungsten under fusion-relevant plasma loading conditions. Journal of Nuclear Materials, 438(suppl. July), S78-S83. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnucmat.2013.01.012