Ion-driven destabilization of a toroidal electron plasma in a small aspect ratio axisymmetric toroidal device is reported for A r + ions of different initial density values using a high fidelity 3D3V PIC solver. Stability of a recently discovered quiescent quasi-steady state (QQS) of a toroidal electron plasma obtained from “seed” solution as a result of entropy extremization at zero inertia is addressed in the presence of a small ion population. An initial value (f0) of the ion fraction (f = n i / n e) and the corresponding secondary electrons are “preloaded” into the system after the electron plasma attains a QQS state. This procedure is regarded as a proxy to the conventional production of ions in the experimental devices via impact ionization. The resulting electron plasma exhibits destabilized “center of charge motion” (m = 1) along with higher order harmonics with dominant power in the second harmonic. Gradual loss of ions (and also electrons) is observed resulting in time varying f values. Beyond a certain value of f0 ( ≥ 0.005), growth in wall probe current is observed, which saturates at later simulation time due to the loss of particles. Trajectories of ion particles indicate ion trapping in the potential well, which is qualitatively similar to the ion resonance instability in pure electron plasmas.

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