Plasma vessel

Although the plasma is confined by a magnetic field, it has to be produced in a vessel, which prevents both admission of air and escape of fuel.

Small amounts of incoming air would already immediately extinguish a burning plasma. The vessel has to be vacuum-tight and capable of being pumped down to a pressure of less than 10-8 millibar, i.e. ultrahigh vacuum.

Part of the plasma vessel during fabrication

To withstand the high loads due to pressure and magnetic forces that can be caused by locally induced currents, it is primarily high-grade steel that serves as vessel material. For measuring, heating and control facilities the vessel requires numerous apertures and ports. Wendelstein 7-X, for example, has 300 such apertures, which are brazed to the vessel vacuum-tight or connected by metal flanges.

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