Laser and Particle Beams

Research Article

Numerical simulation of mixing by Rayleigh–Taylor and Richtmyer–Meshkov instabilities

D.L. Youngsa1

a1 Atomic Weapons Establishment, Aldermaston, Reading, Berkshire, RG7 4PR, United Kingdom


Rayleigh-Taylor (RT) and Richtmyer–Meshkov (RM) instabilities at the pusher–fuel interface in inertial confinement fusion (ICF) targets may significantly degrade thermonuclear burn. Present-day supercomputers may be used to understand the fundamental instability mechanisms and to model the effect of the ensuing mixing on the performance of the ICF target. Direct three-dimensional numerical simulation is used to investigate turbulent mixing due to RT and RM instability in simple situations. A two-dimensional turbulence model is used to assess the effect of small-scale turbulent mixing in the axisymmetric implosion of an idealized ICF target.