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26 February 2015 Dynamics of molecular clouds: observations, simulations, and NIF experiments
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For over fifteen years astronomers at the University of Maryland and theorists and experimentalists at LLNL have investigated the origin and dynamics of the famous Pillars of the Eagle Nebula, and similar parsec-scale structures at the boundaries of HII regions in molecular hydrogen clouds. Eagle Nebula was selected as one of the National Ignition Facility (NIF) Science programs, and has been awarded four NIF shots to study the cometary model of pillar formation. These experiments require a long-duration drive, 30 ns or longer, to drive deeply nonlinear ablative hydrodynamics. The NIF shots will feature a new long-duration x-ray source prototyped at the Omega EP laser, in which multiple hohlraums are driven with UV light in series for 10 ns each and reradiate the energy as an extended x-ray pulse. The new source will be used to illuminate a science package with directional radiation mimicking a cluster of stars. The scaled Omega EP shots tested whether a multi-hohlraum concept is viable — whether earlier time hohlraums would degrade later time hohlraums by preheat or by ejecting ablated plumes that would deflect the later beams. The Omega EP shots illuminated three 2.8 mm long by 1.4 mm diameter Cu hohlraums for 10 ns each with 4.3 kJ per hohlraum. At NIF each hohlraum will be 4 mm long by 3 mm in diameter and will be driven with 80 kJ per hohlraum.
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Jave O. Kane, David A. Martinez, Marc W. Pound, Robert F. Heeter, Alexis Casner, and Roberto C. Mancini "Dynamics of molecular clouds: observations, simulations, and NIF experiments", Proc. SPIE 9345, High Power Lasers for Fusion Research III, 93450C (26 February 2015);


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