Simulations of edge localised mode instabilities in MAST-U Super-X tokamak plasmas

S.F. Smith (Corresponding author), S. J.P. Pamela, A. Fil, M. Hölzl, G. T.A. Huijsmans, A. Kirk, D. Moulton, O. Myatra, A. J. Thornton, H. R. Wilson

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5 Citations (Scopus)


The high heat fluxes to the divertor during edge localised mode (ELM) instabilities have to be reduced for a sustainable future tokamak reactor. A solution to reduce the heat fluxes could be the Super-X divertor, which will be tested on MAST-U. ELM simulations for MAST-U Super-X tokamak plasmas have been obtained, using JOREK. A factor 10 decrease in the peak heat flux to the outer target and almost a factor 8 decrease in the ELM energy fluence when comparing the Super-X to a conventional divertor configuration has been found. A detached MAST-U case, after the roll-over in the target parallel electron density flux, is used as a starting point for ELM burn-through simulations. The plasma burns through the neutrals front during the ELM causing the divertor plasma to re-attach. After the crash a transition back to detachment is indicated, where the recovery to pre-ELM divertor conditions occurs in a few milliseconds, when the neutral pressure is high in the divertor. Recovery times are shorter than the inter-ELM phase in previous MAST experiments. The peak ELM energy fluence obtained after the ELM burn-through is 0.82 kJ/m2, which is significantly lower than that predicted from the empirical scaling of the ELM energy fluence - indicating promising results for future MAST-U operations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number066021
Number of pages19
JournalNuclear Fusion
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020


  • ELM
  • ELM burn-through
  • MAST-U super-X
  • non-linear MHD
  • simulations


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