Fusion Science and Technology / Volume 54 / Number 2 / August 2008 / Pages 423-425
Technical Paper / Isotope Separation
Among the most difficult problems of cryogenic distillation one stands apart: the extraction of the heavy fraction. By an optimal design of the cycle scheme, this problem could be avoided. A "worst case scenario" is usually occurring when the extracted fraction consists of one prevalent isotope such as hydrogen and small amounts of the other two hydrogen isotopes (deuterium and/or tritium). This situation is further complicated by two parameters of the distillation column: the extraction flow rate and the hold-up. The present work proposes the conceptual design of an extraction system associated to the cryogenic distillation column used in hydrogen separation processes. During this process, the heavy fraction (DT, T2) is separated, its concentration being the highest at the bottom of the distillation column. From this place the extraction of the gaseous phase can now begin. Being filled with adsorbent, the extraction system is used to temporarily store the heavy fraction. Also the extraction system provides samples for the gas chromatograph. The research work is focused on the existent pilot plant for tritium and deuterium separation from our institute to validate the experiments carried out until now.