Microwave beam broadening due to turbulent plasma density fluctuations within the limit of the Born approximation and beyond

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


  • A. Köhn
  • L. Guidi
  • E. Holzhauer
  • O. Maj
  • E. Poli
  • A. Snicker
  • H. Weber

Research units

  • Max-Planck-Institut für Plasmaphysik
  • University of Stuttgart
  • Technical University of Munich


Plasma turbulence, and edge density fluctuations in particular, can under certain conditions broaden the cross-section of injected microwave beams significantly. This can be a severe problem for applications relying on well-localized deposition of the microwave power, like the control of MHD instabilities. Here we investigate this broadening mechanism as a function of fluctuation level, background density and propagation length in a fusion-relevant scenario using two numerical codes, the full-wave code IPF-FDMC and the novel wave kinetic equation solver WKBeam. The latter treats the effects of fluctuations using a statistical approach, based on an iterative solution of the scattering problem (Born approximation). The full-wave simulations are used to benchmark this approach. The Born approximation is shown to be valid over a large parameter range, including ITER-relevant scenarios.


Original languageEnglish
Article number075006
Pages (from-to)1-13
JournalPlasma Physics and Controlled Fusion
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2018
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Research areas

  • density fluctuations, electromagnetic waves, electron cyclotron waves, magnetized plasmas, plasma turbulence, scattering of electromagnetic radiation, simulation

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