Tritium Activation Skid

By: VPC  09-12-2011
Keywords: Pumps, Vacuum, Helium Leak

The activation skid was designed with to activate titanium storage vessels before their use in tritium gas handling. 

A high-temperature, pre-activation step is necessary to remove surface impurities (such as oxygen and nitrogen) from titanium metal to allow tritium to react with titanium metal at room temperature.  To activate the titanium for the titanium-tritium reaction, a tritium storage vessel is installed in the activation apparatus and evacuated to a pressure below 1 x 10-4 Pa.  The vessel is then heated to 525 ºC and maintained there while vacuum pumping.  The vacuum pressure is maintained under this condition for another 1-2 hours for complete degassing of the titanium.  

The skid includes a vacuum system consisting of a high vacuum turbomolecular pump, two roughing pumps, valves, gauging, electrical tube furnace, temperature control system and electrical control panel for operation of furnace, valves, gauges and pumps.

The system operates manually and independently of other equipment.  All necessary instruments, controls and readouts are contained on one skid.  Automatic vacuum isolation valves are provided to isolate the storage vessel in the event of a power failure.

Helium leak testing ensured that the complete vacuum system was leak tight to below 10-6 atm·cc/s (mbar·l/s).  The total system was inspected to CSA 22.2 approval and painted to customer specifications.

Keywords: Helium Leak, Pumps, Vacuum,

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