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Proceedings Paper

Recent advances in automatic alignment system for the National Ignition Facility
Author(s): Karl Wilhelmsen; Abdul A. S. Awwal; Dan Kalantar; Richard Leach; Roger Lowe-Webb; David McGuigan; Vicki Miller Kamm
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Paper Abstract

The automatic alignment system for the National Ignition Facility (NIF) is a large-scale parallel system that directs all 192 laser beams along the 300-m optical path to a 50-micron focus at target chamber in less than 50 minutes. The system automatically commands 9,000 stepping motors to adjust mirrors and other optics based upon images acquired from high-resolution digital cameras viewing beams at various locations. Forty-five control loops per beamline request image processing services running on a LINUX cluster to analyze these images of the beams and references, and automatically steer the beams toward the target. This paper discusses the upgrades to the NIF automatic alignment system to handle new alignment needs and evolving requirements as related to various types of experiments performed. As NIF becomes a continuously-operated system and more experiments are performed, performance monitoring is increasingly important for maintenance and commissioning work. Data, collected during operations, is analyzed for tuning of the laser and targeting maintenance work. Handling evolving alignment and maintenance needs is expected for the planned 30-year operational life of NIF.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 February 2011
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 7916, High Power Lasers for Fusion Research, 79160O (18 February 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.878496
Show Author Affiliations
Karl Wilhelmsen, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Abdul A. S. Awwal, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Dan Kalantar, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Richard Leach, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Roger Lowe-Webb, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
David McGuigan, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Vicki Miller Kamm, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7916:
High Power Lasers for Fusion Research
Abdul A. S. Awwal; A. Mike Dunne; Hiroshi Azechi; Brian E. Kruschwitz, Editor(s)

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