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Development of the Los Alamos National Laboratory Cryogenic Pressure Loader

Peter S. Ebey, James M. Dole, James K. Hoffer, Joseph E. Nasise, Arthur Nobile, Robert L. Nolen, John D. Sheliak

Fusion Science and Technology / Volume 43 / Number 3 / Pages 259-269

May 2003


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Targets for inertial fusion research and ignition at OMEGA, the National Ignition Facility, LMJ, and future facilities rely on beta-radiation-driven layering of spherical cryogenic DT ice layers contained within plastic or metal shells. Plastic shells will be permeation filled at room temperature then cooled to cryogenic temperatures before removal of the overpressure. The cryogenic pressure loader (CPL) was recently developed at Los Alamos National Laboratory as a testbed for studying the filling and layering of plastic target shells with DT. A technical description of the CPL is provided. The CPL consists of a cryostat, which contains a high-pressure permeation cell, and has optical access for investigating beta layering. The cryostat is housed within a tritium glovebox that contains manifolds for supplying high-pressure DT. The CPL shares some design elements with the cryogenic target handling system at the OMEGA facility to allow testing of tritium issues related to that system. The CPL has the capability to fill plastic targets by permeation to pressures up to 100 MPa and to cool them to 15 K. The CPL will accommodate a range of targets and may be modified for future experiments.

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