Model-based electron density profile estimation and control, applied to ITER

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In contemporary magnetic confinement devices, the density distribution is sensed with interferometers and actuated with feedback controlled gas injection and open-loop pellet injection. This is at variance with the density control for ITER and DEMO, that will depend mainly on pellet injection as an actuator in feed-back control. This paper presents recent developments in state estimation and control of the electron density profile for ITER using relevant sensors and actuators. As a first step, Thomson scattering is included in an existing dynamic state observer. Second, model predictive control is developed as a strategy to regulate the density profile while avoiding limits associated with the total density (Greenwald limit) or gradients in the density distribution (e.g. neoclassical impurity transport). Simulations show that high quality density profile estimation can be achieved with Thomson Scattering and that the controller is capable of regulating the distribution as desired.
Original languageEnglish
Article number115015
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Physics Communications
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 19 Nov 2021


This work has been carried out within the framework of the EUROfusion Consortium and has received funding from the Euratom research and training programme 2014-2018 and 2019-2020 under grant agreement No 633 053. The views and opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of the European Commission. The authors would like to thank T.Ravensbergen for his help with Simulink and the many great discussion that helped the work forward.

FundersFunder number
Euratom Research and Training Programme633 053


    • ITER
    • density control
    • kalman filter
    • pellet injection
    • state estimation


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