The Trilateral Euregio Cluster (TEC)
The Laboratory for Plasma Physics of the Association "EURATOM - Belgian State" (Brussels, Belgium) works in close collaboration with two other EURATOM associations: IPP-FZJ (Germany) and FOM (The Netherlands). Under the framework of the "Trilateral Euregio Cluster" (TEC), physical and technical questions of a fusion device are studied on the TEXTOR (Toroidal Experiment for Technology Oriented Research) tokamak in Julich. TEXTOR's mission not only includes a detailed analysis of particle and energy exchange between the plasma and the surrounding chamber but also involves active measures to optimize the first wall and the plasma boundary region in such a way that wall erosion, particle release and impurity influx to the plasma core are reduced to tolerable levels. Its research program contributes know-how to enable choosing suitable wall materials for next step machines. The use of thin layers of wall coating materials like boron was pioneered in TEXTOR, and is now widely used in the fusion community. Also confinement and stability are looked into. TEXTOR took a lead role in exploring the impact on the coupling efficiency of auxiliary heating power of gas and plasma dynamics close to antennae and in demonstrating the (under certain circumstances absence of) need of the Faraday screen in front of it. Also the RI ("radiative improved") mode of tokamak operation was developed on TEXTOR. This mode, which has by now been tested on a wide variety of fusion machines, is one of the possible operation modes of future fusion machines. Most recently, the DED (Dynamic Ergodic Divertor) was installed to study the impact of stochasticity on confinement. TEXTOR is a tokamak of the limiter type. It is equipped with several different types of auxiliary heating: neutral beam injection, radio frequency heating and micro-wave heating.
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