The Russian-American high magnetic field collaboration Page: 4 of 8
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THE MC-1 GENERATOR
Figure 1 is a sketch of the complete assembly. Item 2 is the main explosive charge, with
an outer diameter of 300 mm. Ten initiator blocks, each subtending 36*, are secured to the outer
diameter of the main charge. The ten detonators, one for each block, in Russia are connected in
series and fired simultaneously using a 60 kV x unit. At Los Alamos, detonators in this
configuration are normally connected in parallel and fired with a 2500 V x unit.
Major generator hardware components are also shown in Fig. 1. A number of these are
support and centering components as noted in the figure caption. The key components, items 10,
6 and 5, are called "cascades." The first cascade, #10, does double duty. It consists of hundreds
of turns of fine, insulated copper wire. Each turn is first connected to the ring electrode "a", then
wound over the cascade length as a 2-turn helix, and then returned parallel to the coil axis, out-
side of the helical winding, to ring electrode "b". The entire assembly is then potted in epoxy.
This cascade first functions as the seed source for the generator, when current is passed through
the solenoid. Its second role is that of a flux trapper during explosive compression. It does this
when the explosive detonation front reaches the closely spaced, but insulated, copper wires.
Shortly thereafter, the wires get fused together, thus forming a closed copper cylinder.
The second and third cascades, items 6 and 5, consist of a large number of fine insulated
copper wires, aligned parallel to the cylinder axis and potted in epoxy. Magnetic fields pass
freely through the cascades until they are hit by another, incoming cascade. Like the first cas-
Figure 1. MC- I generator with three cascades. 1 -insulated current feed for solenoid, 2-explosive
charge, 3,4- support stands, 5-third cascade, 6-second cascade, 7,8,9- support cradles for
cascades, 10-solenoid (first cascade), 11 -assembly nut, 12-initiator block, 13a,b-ring clectrodes..
The solenoid wires are connected to 13a, the return wires, parallel to the cylinder axis, are
connected to 13b. 14-one of the coaxial cables (usually twenty- four) connecting the capacitor
bank to the solenoid. The cable center wire is connected to 13a, the ground braid to 13b.
ro 7 9 3
1 12 2 5
!3 6 13a;
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Fowler, C.M.; Christian, J.M. & Freeman, B.L. The Russian-American high magnetic field collaboration, article, July 1, 1995; New Mexico. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc791648/m1/4/: accessed September 25, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.