<radiobiology> Plasma instabilities (usually oscillatory modes) sometimes grow and cause disruptions of the carefully-engineered plasma conditions in the reactor. Major disruptions can cause an abrupt temperature drop and the termination of the plasma.

Stored energy in the plasma is rapidly dumped into the rest of the plasma system (vacuum vessel walls, magnet coils, etc.) and can cause significant damage if precautions are not taken.

(09 Oct 1997)