The Paα line (1875.13 nm) in the near-infrared (NIR) region was evaluated to apply Stark broadening of the line spectrum to the electron density measurement of the small-pellet ablation cloud in Heliotron J, a medium-sized helical-axis heliotron device. Paα is three-to-four times broader than the visible Hβ line (486.13 nm) for the same electron density. Using a portable NIR spectrometer, preliminary proof-of-concept experiments determined the marginal density, below which the broadening was undetectable. The lower detection density limit can be decreased using a narrower entrance slit or a denser grating.

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