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Abstract

The successful operation of ITER advanced scenarios is likely to be a major step forward in the development of controlled fusion as a power production source. ITER advanced scenarios raise specific challenges that are not encountered in presently-operated tokamaks. In this thesis, it is argued that ITER advanced operation may benefit from optimal control techniques. Optimal control ensures high performance operation while guaranteeing tokamak integrity. The application of optimal control techniques for ITER operation is assessed and it is concluded that robust optimisation is appropriate for ITER operation of advanced sce- narios. Real-time optimisation schemes are discussed and it is concluded that the necessary conditions of optimality tracking approach may potentially be appropriate for ITER operation, thus offering a viable closed-loop optimal control approach. Simulations of ITER advanced operation are necessary in order to assess the present ITER design and uncover the main difficulties that may be encountered during advanced operation. The DINA-CH&CRONOS full tokamak simulator is used to simulate the operation of the ITER hybrid and steady-state scenarios. It is concluded that the present ITER design is appropriate for performing a hybrid scenario pulse lasting more than 1000s, with a flat-top plasma current of 12MA, and a fusion gain of Q ∼= 8. Similarly, a steady-state scenario without internal transport barrier, with a flat-top plasma current of 10MA, and with a fusion gain of Q ∼= 5 can be realised using the present ITER design. The sensitivity of the advanced scenarios with respect to transport models and physical assumption is assessed using CRONOS. It is concluded that the hybrid scenario and the steady- state scenario are highly sensitive to the L-H transition timing, to the value of the confinement enhancement factor, to the heating and current drive scenario during ramp-up, and, to a lesser extent, to the density peaking and pedestal pressure.

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