The gyrokinetic turbulence code GS2 was used to investigate the effects of plasma β on linear, collisionless ion temperature gradient (ITG) modes and trapped electron modes (TEM) in National Compact Stellarator Experiment (NCSX) geometry. Plasma β affects stability in two ways: through the equilibrium and through magnetic fluctuations. The first was studied here by comparing ITG and TEM stability in two NCSX equilibria of differing β values, revealing that the high β equilibrium was marginally more stable than the low β equilibrium in the adiabatic-electron ITG mode case. However, the high β case had a lower kinetic-electron ITG mode critical gradient. Electrostatic and electromagnetic ITG and TEM mode growth rate dependencies on temperature gradient and density gradient were qualitatively similar. The second β effect is demonstrated via electromagnetic ITG growth rates' dependency on GS2's β input parameter. A linear benchmark with gyrokinetic codes GENE and GKV-X is also presented.

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