Laboratory for Laser Energetics
Friday, April 5, 2019
The laser direct drive approach is one of the three principle approaches to achieve fusion ignition and gain in inertial fusion. Significant progress has been made over the past year with a tripling of the fusion yield and a scaled (to MJ energies such as that available on NIF) pressure-confinement time product 75% of that required for ignition. The improvements in fusion performance were obtained using a novel statistical model that mines the extensive data base of Omega. Significant challenges remain however in quantifying and mitigating laser driven plasma instabilities that reduce the target coupling and generate energetic electrons that can preheat the fuel and reduce the compression. To address this challenge, a novel experimental platform, advanced diagnostics and simulation tools have been established at LLE and an advanced laser concept that has the potential to expand laser parameter space for all laser fusion approaches is under development. In addition to expand the opportunities for high energy density science, a new facility that includes two 30 Petawatt lasers has recently been proposed and will also be presented.
This material is based upon work supported by the Department of Energy National Nuclear Security Administration under Award Number DE-NA0003856, the University of Rochester, and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority.