Diagnostics for inertial confinement fusion
A decade ago, three new High-Energy-Density (HED) facilities commenced operation in the United States. The National Ignition Facility (NIF) is the world's most powerful laser, Omega EP was commissioned as a high-energy, petawatt laser system, and the Z pulsed-power facility was refurbished and increased in capability. In the decade since these HED facilities commenced operation, they have been equipped with ever more precise and more resolved diagnostic instruments. Significant advances are improving the quality of the data obtained in experiments in the thermonuclear regime, as well as gathering needed information in experiments leading up to high-fusion-yield experiments. This special topic will survey the important developments in instrumentation on NIF, Omega EP, and the refurbished Z pulsed power facility, prompted by the new plasma conditions and plasma physics topics being investigated at these facilities. The increased capabilities of these new instruments, such as increased spatial resolution, better time resolution, and higher sensitivity, enable research in parameter regime unmeasurable before and test our physics understanding of the plasma state. This special topic issue will survey the various types of instruments being deployed, including radiochemical, optical, x-ray, particle, and nuclear diagnostics and will include instruments particular to the different types of high-energy drivers being used. New detectors and data analysis techniques will also be included.
Guest Editor: Steven Batha