Assessment of atomic data: problems and solutions

Kanti M. Aggarwal & Francis P. Keenan (Astrophysics Research Centre, School of Mathematics and Physics, Queen’s University Belfast, Belfast BT71NN, Northern Ireland, UK)

For the reliable analysis and modelling of astrophysical, laser-produced and fusion plasmas, atomic data are required for a number of parameters, including energy levels, radiative rates and electron impact excitation rates. Such data are desired for a range of elements (H to W) and their many ions. However, measurements of atomic data, mainly for radiative and excitation rates, are not feasible for many species and therefore calculations are needed. For some ions (such as of C, Fe and Kr) there are a variety of calculations available in the literature, but often they significantly differ from one another. Therefore, there is a great demand from the user community to have data `assessed’ for accuracy so that they can be confidently applied to the modelling of plasmas. In this paper we highlight the difficulties in assessing atomic data and offer some solutions for improving the accuracy of calculated results.

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