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Experimental Signatures of Critically Balanced Turbulence in MAST

By Y. -c. Ghim, A. A. Schekochihin, A. R. Field, I. G. Abel, M. Barnes, G. Colyer, S. C. Cowley, F. I. Parra, D. Dunai, S. Zoletnik and the MAST Team


Beam Emission Spectroscopy (BES) measurements of ion-scale density fluctuations in the MAST tokamak are used to show that the turbulence correlation time, the drift time associated with ion temperature or density gradients, the particle (ion) streaming time along the magnetic field and the magnetic drift time are consistently comparable, suggesting a "critically balanced" turbulence determined by the local equilibrium. The resulting scalings of the poloidal and radial correlation lengths are derived and tested. The nonlinear time inferred from the density fluctuations is longer than the other times; its ratio to the correlation time scales as $\nu_{*i}^{-0.8\pm0.1}$, where $\nu_{*i}=$ ion collision rate/streaming rate. This is consistent with turbulent decorrelation being controlled by a zonal component, invisible to the BES, with an amplitude exceeding the drift waves' by $\sim \nu_{*i}^{-0.8}$.Comment: 6 pages, 4 figures, submitted to PR

Topics: Physics - Plasma Physics
Year: 2012
DOI identifier: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.110.145002
OAI identifier:

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