Center for Advanced Diagnostics

The Center is dedicated to advancing measurement science and diagnostics

Radio Frequency (RF) plasma diagnostics

RF plasma diagnostics are powerful and robust methods for measuring localized and path-averaged plasma density and temperature. These techniques utilize antenna or heavy-walled aluminum waveguides and thus are well-suited to the high-radiation, high-temperature, and vacuum conditions present in many fusion machines. RF diagnostic methods are also well suited to industrial plasma measurements due to their ease of frequency tuning and thus variable coupling with the plasma of interest. They are a highly robust diagnostics that require minimal maintenance. The Diagnostics Center has both the ability to build custom RF diagnostics and fabricate RF components suitable for frequencies up to low THz and capable of handling megawatts of continuous power. Contact us to determine how our RF expertise and diagnostic background can yield robust, reliable measurements for your plasma system.


  • Low Field Side Reflectometer (LFSR)

    Broadband mm-wave, frequency-modulated continuous wave (FMCW) reflectometer for inferring the electron density profile and identifying plasma instabilities and turbulence for the ITER experimental fusion reactor.

  • Fast wave interferometer/reflectometer at DIII-D

    The Fast Wave Interferometer, a MHz range device, efficiently measures a plasma's ion mass density and isotope ratios by utilizing a MHz wave to detect phase shifts. Its design, featuring coaxial cables and waveguides, ensures signal transmission efficiency. Notably, it is resistant to surface contamination, reducing maintenance needs, and it operates effectively even in high-density environments.