Real-time control of a Tokamak plasma using neural networks

Christopher M. Bishop, P. S. Haynes, M. E. U. Smith, T. N. Todd, D. L. Trotman, C. G. Windsor

Research output: Chapter in Book/Published conference outputChapter


This paper presents results from the first use of neural networks for the real-time feedback control of high temperature plasmas in a Tokamak fusion experiment. The Tokamak is currently the principal experimental device for research into the magnetic confinement approach to controlled fusion. In the Tokamak, hydrogen plasmas, at temperatures of up to 100 Million K, are confined by strong magnetic fields. Accurate control of the position and shape of the plasma boundary requires real-time feedback control of the magnetic field structure on a time-scale of a few tens of microseconds. Software simulations have demonstrated that a neural network approach can give significantly better performance than the linear technique currently used on most Tokamak experiments. The practical application of the neural network approach requires high-speed hardware, for which a fully parallel implementation of the multi-layer perceptron, using a hybrid of digital and analogue technology, has been developed.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in Neural Information Processing Systems 7
EditorsG. Tesauro, D. S. Touretzky, T. D. Leen
Place of PublicationDever, US
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)0262201046
Publication statusPublished - 28 Dec 1994
EventAdvances in Neural Information Processing Systems 1994 - Singapore, Singapore
Duration: 16 Nov 199418 Nov 1994


OtherAdvances in Neural Information Processing Systems 1994

Bibliographical note

Copyright of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Press (MIT Press)


  • neural networks
  • temperature plasmas
  • Tokamak
  • fusion
  • magnetic
  • magnetic fields


Dive into the research topics of 'Real-time control of a Tokamak plasma using neural networks'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this