The Magnetic Reconnection Experiment

New: The next-generation device, FLARE (Facility for Laboratory Reconnection Experiments), is currently under construction and expected to be online in 2017.

MRX Plasma Discharge in MRX
The vacuum vessel and equilibrium field coils (blue) of the Magnetic Reconnection Experiment. Click to enlarge. A plasma discharge in MRX. The two flux cores and magnetic diagnostics are visible. Click to enlarge.

The Magnetic Reconnection Experiment (MRX) is a small laboratory experiment located at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL). This project was also affiliated with Center for Magnetic Self-Organization in Laboratory and Astrophysical Plasmas (CMSO). The goal of MRX is to investigate the fundamental physics of magnetic field line reconnection, an important process in magnetized plasmas in space and in the laboratory. Click here to learn more about magnetic reconnection.

Movies about MRX: Streaming version (12 MB) or Full version (80 MB).

MRX was constructed in 1995, achieving first plasma in October of that year. Since then, many important and exciting experimental results and publications have come from research on this machine. MRX is jointly supported by NASA, NSF, and DOE.

Yohkoh The Aurora
A soft X-ray image of the sun taken by the Yohkoh satellite. Reconnection is thought to play a role in coronal heating. Click to enlarge. The charged particles which create the aurora are thought to be accelerated through magnetic reconnection. Click to enlarge.




Last Revised on 12/17/16
by Hantao Ji