Utilisation and Reliability of High Power Proton Accelerators

Workshop Proceedings, Mol, Belgium, 6-9 May 2007

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Accelerator-driven systems (ADS) are being considered for their potential use in the transmutation of radioactive waste. The performance of such hybrid nuclear systems depends to a large extent on the specification and reliability of high power accelerators, as well as the integration of the accelerator with spallation targets and sub-critical systems. At present, much R&D work is still required in order to demonstrate the desired capability of the system as a whole.

Accelerator scientists and reactor physicists from around the world gathered at an NEA workshop to discuss issues of common interest and to present the most recent achievements in their research. Discussions focused on accelerator reliability; target, window and coolant technology; sub-critical system design and ADS simulations; safety and control of ADS; and ADS experiments and test facilities. These proceedings contain the technical papers presented at the workshop as well as summaries of the working group discussions held. They will be of particular interest to scientists working on ADS development as well as on radioactive waste management issues in general.


SESSION III - Spallation Target Development and Coolant Technology

Nuclear Energy Agency

The WEBEXPIR (Windowless target Electron Beam EXPerimental IRradiation) programme was set up as part of the MYRRHA/XT-ADS R&D efforts on the spallation target design, in order to answer different questions concerning the interaction of a proton beam with a liquid lead-bismuth eutectic (LBE) free surface. An experiment was conceived at the IBA TT-1000 Rhodotron, a 7-MeV electron accelerator which produces beam currents of up to 100 mA. Due to the small penetration depth of the 7-MeV electron beam and the high beam currents available, the TT-1000 allows to imitate the high power deposition at the MYRRHA/XT-ADS LBE free surface. The main goals of the experiment were to assess possible free surface distortion or shockwave effects under nominal conditions and during sudden beam on/off transient situations, as well as possible enhanced evaporation. The geometry and the LBE flow characteristics in the WEBEXPIR set-up were made as representative as possible of the actual situation in the MYRRHA/XT-ADS spallation target. Irradiation experiments were carried out at beam currents of up to 10 mA, corresponding to 40 times the nominal beam current necessary to reproduce the MYRRHA/XT-ADS conditions. As a preliminary general conclusion, it can be stated that the WEBEXPIR free surface flow was not disturbed by the interaction with the electron beam and that vacuum conditions stayed well within the design specifications.


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