The physics of turbulence localised to the tokamak divertor volume

Nicholas Walkden*, Fabio Riva, James Harrison, Fulvio Militello, Thomas Farley, John Omotani, Bruce Lipschultz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Fusion power plant designs based on magnetic confinement, such as the tokamak design, offer a promising route to sustainable fusion power but require robust exhaust solutions capable of tolerating intense heat and particle fluxes from the plasma at the core of the device. Turbulent plasma transport in the region where the interface between the plasma and the materials of the device is handled - called the divertor volume - is poorly understood, yet impacts several key factors ultimately affecting device performance. In this article a comprehensive study of the underlying physics of turbulence in the divertor volume is conducted using data collected in the final experimental campaign of the Mega Ampere Spherical Tokamak device, compared to high fidelity nonlinear simulations. The physics of the turbulence is shown to be strongly dependant on the geometry of the divertor volume - a potentially important result as the community looks to advanced divertor designs with complex geometry for future fusion power plants. These results lay the foundations of a first-principles physics basis for turbulent transport in the tokamak divertor, providing a critical step towards a predictive understanding of tokamak divertor plasma solutions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number139
Number of pages10
JournalCommunications Physics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work has been carried out within the framework of the EUROfusion Consortium and has received funding from the Euratom research and training programme 2014–2018 and 2019–2020 under grant agreement No 633053, and through the EPSRC Grant EP/T012250/1. The views and opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of the European Commission. To obtain further information on the data and models underlying this paper please contact

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022, The Author(s).

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