Spallation Source

Neutrons are very much welcomed in order to perform numerous kind of analysis. One way to generate intense pulsed Neutron beams is to use an accelerator driven spallation source. Due to the high radiation environment all vacuum components built into such an accelerator need to fulfill special requirements.

Application requirements

  • Turbopumps, dry backing pumps and total pressure gauges

  • Highly reliable vacuum technology products

  • Turbopumps to be maintained onsite

  • Designed for harsh environment such as high radioactivity

  • Remote electronics with long cables

  • Long lifetime

On the trail of the Higgs boson: The world’s largest vacuum system relies on vacuum solutions from Pfeiffer Vacuum

Requirements for vacuum equipment
In general, electronics are part of the modern vacuum equipment device. In highly radioactive environments like accelerator driven spallation sources semiconductors would be damaged quickly. The usage of remote electronics is only one way to apply vacuum equipment in this particular application where in some cases millions of Gray radiation exposure is present. The pressure generated by turbopumps can vary between 10-5 to 10-8 Pa (10-7 to 10-10 mbar). Measurement equipment is required to operate as low as 10-9 Pa (10-11 mbar).

Pfeiffer Vacuum solutions and product portfolio
Turbopumps, dry backing pumps and total pressure gauges have the ability to have their electronics external mounted in a rack some distance from the target. These vacuum components are designed so that separation of electronics parts prevents damaged in extreme environmental conditions. For this and similar applications the cable lengths between electronics and vacuum equipment can be as long as 1,000 m. Pfeiffer Vacuum has a great deal of experience with these applications and provides product solutions for neutron spallation sources all over the world.

Vacuum technology challenges: Radiation-resistant pumps for spallation sources