For fusion tokamak reactors the diagnostics and RF heating systems require the use of components with parts made of non-metallic materials. These can form part of the vacuum boundary of the tokamak which is the primary safety boundary and have a function of containing tritium fuel or activated gases and particulate debris. The engineering practices for such components and non-metallic materials are in an early state of preparation and require development to enable systems to be used in a safety and licensing context. Such developments will have to reflect the brittle nature of the materials, and are likely to be based on established arguments developed within the nuclear industry, such as containment and defence in depth. Given these requirements this task is a major challenge. The window systems fall broadly into two categories: • Transmission windows for the input of high-power microwaves to drive and heat the plasma; • Diagnostic windows to monitor the plasma. Currently there are no established fusion design codes that can be used to assure nuclear safety and a consistent engineering approach for either application. This paper reviews the progress made in developing such practices for transmission and diagnostic windows made from ceramic materials. The investigations undertaken and the engineering practices addressed for the tokamak windows generally fall into the following areas: • reviews of potential candidate materials along with a summary of the available property data; • definition of the function of torus window assemblies and an outline of the complexity and variety of design considerations (including historical failures, and statutory requirements); • development of the design methodology for technical ceramics; • definition of the design routes considered and selected (rule, analysis, experiment); • consideration of the material data available (or lack of) for technical ceramics and their failure criteria; • qualification and design of metallic / ceramic joints; • definition of the requirements with regard to quality control, from manufacture to in-service inspection; • development and formation of a draft code procedure. The practices and procedures developed are considered to be an important contribution and significant step forward in the development of a fusion tokamak windows code. Important contributions have been made to the design, procurement and installation philosophies for windows, especially the development of design criteria and the application of pressure proof-testing. This paper provides a review of key requirements and issues, with recommendations to allow development of the code for acceptance by nuclear regulators for tokamaks such as the International Tokamak Experimental Reactor (ITER) and future fusion reactor power plants.
- Nuclear Engineering Division
Engineering Practices for Tokamak Window Assemblies
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Waldon, C, Morrell, R, Buckthorpe, D, Davies, M, & Sherlock, P. "Engineering Practices for Tokamak Window Assemblies." Proceedings of the 17th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering. Volume 2: Structural Integrity; Safety and Security; Advanced Applications of Nuclear Technology; Balance of Plant for Nuclear Applications. Brussels, Belgium. July 12–16, 2009. pp. 253-263. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/ICONE17-75858
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