Energy Research at the University of Washington

Uri Shumlak

Energy Research Area: Plasma confinement for nuclear fusion energy

Professor
College of Engineering
Aeronautics and Astronautics

I develop innovative plasma confinement concepts for the generation of nuclear fusion energy. These concepts use the inherent plasma properties to relax the need for large applied magnetic fields. The Z-pinch is a simple, linear configuration to magnetically confine a high-temperature, high-density plasma. A magnetic field confines and compresses the plasma. However, the plasma current generates all of the magnetic fields. There are no applied magnetic fields and no magnetic field coils. The concept was investigated extensively for fusion energy applications; however, the configuration is unstable to gross sausage and kink modes.

Picture of the Z-pinch experimental hardware with a few of the surrounding diagnostics
Picture of the Z-pinch experimental hardware with a few of the surrounding diagnostics

Research Images

Picture of the Z-pinch research team next to the experiment and Thomson scattering laser used to measure plasma temperature

Campus and Other Collaborators/Partners

Record last updated on November 29th 2011 PDT.