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LASL fabrication flowsheet for GPHS fuel pellets

Description: The General Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) being developed by the Los Alamos Scienific Laboratory for the Department of Energy, Division of Advanced Nuclear Systems and Projects, consists of a series of graphite modules, each having a thermal power inventory of 62.5 watts. Each module is loaded with four cylindrical 62.5-W /sup 238/PuO/sub 2/ fuel pellets. The report summarizes the specifications for these pellets together with the fabrication flowsheet developed at LASL.
Date: August 1, 1979
Creator: Kent, R.A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

General-purpose heat source development. Phase II: conceptual designs. [/sup 238/PuO2]

Description: Basic geometric module shapes and fuel arrays were studied to determine how well they could be expected to meet the General Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) design requirements. Seven conceptual designs were selected, detailed drawings produced, and these seven concepts analyzed. Three of these design concepts were selected as GPHS Trial Designs to be reanalyzed in more detail and tested. The geometric studies leading to the selection of the seven conceptual designs, the analyses of these designs, and the selection of the three trial designs are discussed.
Date: November 1, 1978
Creator: Snow, E.C.; Zocher, R.W.; Grinberg, I.M. & Hulbert, L.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Quarterly report on the strontium heat source development program, Advanced Nuclear Systems and Projects Division for April-June 1979.

Description: Metallographic examination of the 20,000-hr /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ compatibility test specimens has been completed. Evaluation of the photomicrographs obtained is now under way. The 30,000-hr compatibility tests with nonradioactive SrF/sub 2/ have also been completed, and metallographic examination of the test specimens is now under way. Experimentally determined collapse pressures for the AISI-1018 steel stand-in outer capsules did not agree with theoretical values predicted by various models. Additional mechanical properties measurements on the capsule material have shown that the differences between the experimental collapse values and the theoretical predictions cannot be reconciled by a refinement in the mechanical property data. Additional drop tests with the AISI-1018 steel stand-in capsules have shown that the capsule material must have a minimum impact energy of greater than 5 ft-lb but less than 30 ft-lb to meet the drop test requirement.
Date: July 1, 1979
Creator: Fullam, H. T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

/sup 238/Pu fuel form processes. Bimonthly report, September-October 1979

Description: Progress in the Savannah River /sup 238/Pu Fuel Form Program is summarized. Full-scale fabrication tests continued as 4 pellets (General-Purpose Heat Source Pellets 10, 11, 12, and 13) were hot pressed and 3 pellets (GPHS Pellets 9, 10, and 11) underwent final heat treatment. The successful drilling of a one-eighth-inch diameter hole from the top of GPHS Pellet 8 to the center of the pellet after 2 1/2 months of storage and testing is one of several indications of the overall ruggedness of GPHS fuel pellets fabricated in the PEF. Microstructural analysis of a full-scale GPHS fuel pellet fabricated at LASL (LASL-GPHS Pellet 31) indicated that density gradients and internal cracking were more severe in this pellet than in SRL-GPHS pellets. As-received powder, oxygen-exchanged powder, and ball-milled powder samples from LASL were characterized by SEM analysis and by Coulter Counter particle size analysis.
Date: February 1, 1980
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Milliwatt generator project. Progress report, April-September 1981

Description: This formal biannual report covers the effort related to the Milliwatt Generator Project (MWG) carried out for the Department of Energy, Office of Military Applications, by the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Most of the studies discussed here are of a continuing nature. Results and conclusions may change as the work continues. Published reference to the results cited in this report should not be made without the explicit permission of the person in charge of the work.
Date: December 1, 1981
Creator: Maraman, W.J. (comp.)
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Quarterly report on the strontium heat source development program, Advanced Nuclear Systems and Projects Division for July-September 1979

Description: Metallographic examination of the metal specimens exposed to /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ for 20,000 h was completed, as was the examination of the specimens exposed to nonradioactive SrF/sub 2/ for 30,000 hours. Fabrication and welding of the prototype capsules to be used in the qualification testing program was completed.
Date: October 1, 1979
Creator: Fullam, H. T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

General-Purpose Heat Source Development. Phase I: Design Requirements

Description: Studies have been performed to determine the necessary design requirements for a /sup 238/PuO/sub 2/ General-Purpose Heat Source (GPHS). Systems and missions applications, as well as accident conditions, were considered. The results of these studies, along with the recommended GPHS design requirements, are given in this report.
Date: September 1, 1978
Creator: Snow, E. C. & Zocher, R. W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

/sup 238/Pu fuel form processes. Bimonthly report, November-December 1979

Description: Progress in the Savannah River Laboratory's /sup 238/Pu Fuel Form Program is summarized. Full-scale fabrication tests continued in the Plutonium Experimental Facility (PEF) with the successful fabrication of seven additional GPHS pellets. Three pellets (GPHS Pellets 14, 15, and 16) were fabricated at off-centerline conditions to help define process limits for production of GPHS fuel pellets in the Plutonium Fuel Fabrication (PuFF) Facility. Two additional limit-test pellets (GPHS Pellets 12 and 13) previously hot pressed underwent final heat treatment. Two pellets (GPHS Pellets 17 and 18) were fabricated at centerline conditions as part of the effort to have Savannah River Laboratory (SRL) GPHS pellets impact tested at LASL. All seven pellets remained integral and demonstrated excellent dimensional stability during final heat treatment. However, the quality of those pellets fabricated at centerline conditions was superior to those that were fabricated as part of the limit tests.
Date: November 1, 1980
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Quarterly report on the Strontium Heat Source Development program and the Beneficial Isotopes Utilization program, Division of Nuclear Research and Applications for January--March 1977. [WESF /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ capsules]

Description: Progress on the development of strontium heat sources is presented. Metallographic examination of the Haynes Alloy 25 specimens exhibited considerably more attack than was observed in the initial screening tests with Haynes Alloy 25 and /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/. Attack of the alloy was much greater at 800 and 1000/sup 0/C than at 600/sup 0/C, and the attack mechanisms appeared to vary with temperature. Decreasing the S/V ratio of the test couples produced a marked increase in attack at the higher temperatures. The addition of Zr and ZrF/sub 4/ to the WESF /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/, to simulate decay product buildup, resulted in a marked decrease in attack. The test couples from the 6000 hr tests with WESF /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ were sectioned and the 36 metallographic specimens shipped to ORNL for examination. The first draft of a report detailing the design criteria and qualification requirements for the /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ fueled heat source capsule was prepared and is now being reviewed. A draft report on the feasibility of heaters fueled with strontium fluoride capsules for use in cold regions is being reviewed. Similarly, comments are being obtained for the Study of Sludge Handling Alternatives Final Report and the General Application of Radioisotopes in Army Thermal Systems Final Report.
Date: May 1, 1977
Creator: Fullam, H. T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Multi-hundred watt radioisotope thermoelectric generator program, LES 8/9 program, MJS program. Period from 1 September--31 October 1975

Description: Significant activities performed or monitored by the General Electric Company on the MHW-RTG Program during Sept. and Oct. 1975 are reported. The work included safety, design, development, integration with ERDA and associate contractors, product assurance, hardware fabrication, and acceptance testing. (TFD)
Date: January 1, 1975
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Kilowatt isotope power system. Phase II plan. Volume I. Phase II program plan

Description: The development of a Kilowatt Isotope Power System (KIPS) was begun in 1975 for the purpose of satisfying the power requirements of satellites in the 1980's. The KIPS is a /sup 238/PuO/sub 2/-fueled organic Rankine cycle turbine power system to provide a design output of 500 to 2000 W. Phase II of the overall 3-phase KIPS program is described. This volume presents a program plan for qualifying the organic Rankine power system for flight test in 1982. The program plan calls for the design and fabrication of the proposed flight power system; conducting a development and a qualification program including both environmental and endurance testing, using an electrical and a radioisotope heat source; planning for flight test and spacecraft integration; and continuing ground demonstration system testing to act as a flight system breadboard and to accumulate life data. (LCL)
Date: March 15, 1978
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

/sup 238/Pu fuel form processes bimonthly report, May-June 1979

Description: Progress in the Savannah River /sup 238/Pu Fuel Form Program is summarized. Full-scale fabrication tests of General-Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) fuel forms continued in the SRL Plutonium Experimental Facility (PEF) as four additional pellets (GPHS Pellets 5-8) were hot pressed. GPHS pellets fabricated by the reference process were dimensionally and structurally stable during and after final heat treatment. Microstructural studies confirmed that centerline GPHS process conditions produce pellets with a homogeneous microstructure and a uniform density. Because of the potential for excessive metal creep in existing furnace racks, the racks were considered unacceptable for GPHS fuel production in the PuFF. To eliminate metal creep, racks containing some ceramic components were designed to operate at 1600/sup 0/C in an oxygen atmosphere for more than 100 h. The four-key variables previously identified (shard sintering temperature, hot press load, hot press temperature, and load ramp) were found to correlate with production sphere fracture tendency and bulk density.
Date: February 1, 1980
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Flight-systems safety program, September 1982. Progress report

Description: This technical monthly report covers studies related to the use of /sup 238/PuO/sub 2/ in radioisotope power systems carried out for the Office of Space Nuclear Projects of the US Department of Energy by Los Alamos National Laboratory. Most of the studies discussed here are ongoing. Results and conclusions described may change as the work continues.
Date: February 1, 1983
Creator: Bronisz, S. E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Quarterly report on the strontium heat source development program, Advanced Systems and Materials Production Division for April--June 1978

Description: All of the remaining compatibility tests are proceeding as scheduled. Results of the 20,000-hr compatibility tests with nonradioactive SrF/sub 2/ show that, with one exception, attack of the specimens by the SrF/sub 2/ after 20,000 hr is no greater than after 6000 and 12,000 hr. The one exception involved Haynes Alloy 25 specimens tested at 1000/sup 0/C. These test specimens exhibited isolated subsurface voids to depths of 0.025 in., although the general surface attack was only about 0.001 inches. The cause of the void formation has not yet been determined. Tests with Hastelloy S and Hastelloy C-4 at 600 to 800/sup 0/C for 2500 hr show that oxidation of the two alloys adheres to the parabolic rate law. Both alloys from adherent oxide layers over the temperature range of interest. Intergranular attack, pitting, and subsurface void formation increase sharply with increased oxidation temperature with both alloys, and at 800/sup 0/C the depth of metal exhibiting oxidation damage is several times greater than the thickness of the oxide layer.
Date: July 1, 1978
Creator: Fullam, H. T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

/sup 238/Pu fuel form processes. Quarterly report, January-March 1980

Description: Progress in the general purpose heat source GPHS process demonstration program is reported. Fuel-Scale fabrication tests continued in the Plutonium Experimental Facility (PEF) with the successful fabrication of five additional GPHS pellets (GPHS Pellets 19 to 23). Characterization of GPHS Pellets 17 and 19 to 23 has been completed. Integral pellets of generally good quality continued to be produced in recent fabrication tests at SRL; however, pellets showed more cracks than did centerline pellets. GPHS Pellets 18, 20, and 22, which were fabricated under SRL centerline conditions, were packaged and shipped to LANSL for impact testing. Pre-test inspection at LANSL revealed that all pellets retained the integrity and dimensional stability observed at Savannah River. Direct-strike precipitation of Pu(III) oxalate would eliminate a number of powder-conditioning steps and, therefore, appears to be a safer and simpler method of producing feed for direct fabrication of /sup 238/PuO/sub 2/ fuel forms, according to recent SRL experiments. Powder characterization studies suggested that a mixture of sintered and unsintered rosettes made by direct-strike Pu(III) oxalate precipitation might be successfully substituted for the shards currently being used for fabrication of GPHS fuel forms.
Date: March 1, 1981
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Quarterly report on the Strontium Heat Source Development Program, Advanced Systems and Materials Production Division for January--March 1978. [WESF /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ capsules]

Description: Work has started on a theoretical analysis of the possible consequences of a WESF /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ capsule rupture in an ocean environment. ORNL has begun work on sectioning the capsules from the 12,000 hr compatibility tests with WESF /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/. Examination of the Haynes Alloy 25 specimens which were exposed to WESF /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ for 6000 hr has been completed. The 6000-hr specimens suffered much greater attack than the equivalent 1000-hr specimens. The chemical attack mechanisms appeared to vary depending on the exposure temperature, while the addition of Zr + ZrF/sub 4/ to the /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ to simulate decay product buildup, produced a marked decrease in metal attack. The preliminary design of the outer capsule for the /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ heat source has been completed. Fabrication of prototype test capsules from AISI 1018 low carbon steel, as a stand-in for thermally aged Hastelloy S, is now underway. The prototype capsules will be subjected to the major /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ heat source qualification test requirements (1000-bar hydrostatic pressure test, impact test, and puncture test) to determine the adequacy of the outer capsule design.
Date: April 1, 1978
Creator: Fullam, H. T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Organic Rankine Kilowatt Isotope Power System. Final phase I report

Description: On 1 August 1975 under Department of Energy Contract EN-77-C-02-4299, Sundstrand Energy Systems commenced development of a Kilowatt Isotope Power System (KIPS) directed toward satisfying the higher power requirements of satellites of the 1980s and beyond. The KIPS is a /sup 238/PuO/sub 2/ fueled organic Rankine cycle turbine power system which will provide design output power in the range of 500 to 2000 W/sub (e)/ with a minimum of system changes. The principal objectives of the Phase 1 development effort were to: conceptually design a flight system; design a Ground Demonstration System (GDS) that is prototypic of the flight system in order to prove the feasibility of the flight system design; fabricate and assemble the GDS; and performance and endurance test the GDS using electric heaters in lieu of the isotope heat source. Results of the work performed under the Phase 1 contract to 1 July 1978 are presented.
Date: July 15, 1978
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Space nuclear safety and fuels program. Progress report, December 1980

Description: This formal monthly report covers the studies related to the use of /sup 238/PuO/sub 2/ in radioisotopic power systems carried out for the Space and Terrestrial Systems Division of the US Department of Energy by the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Most of the studies discussed here are of a continuing nature. Results and conclusions described may change as the work continues. Published reference to the results cited in this report should not be made without the explicit permission of the person in charge of the work.
Date: February 1, 1981
Creator: Bronisz, S. E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Quarterly report on the strontium heat source development program, Advanced Systems and Materials Production Division for October--December 1978.

Description: The 20,000-hr compatibility tests using WESF /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ have been completed. The test capsules were shipped to Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and metallographic examination of the test specimens is now underway. Work continues on the final design of the prototype outer capsule. Efforts are underway to obtain the Hastelloy S and Hastelloy C-4 to be used in fabricating the prototype outer capsules. Puncture testing of the stand-in steel outer capsule was carried out without damage to the capsule. Effort continued on impact testing of the stand-in capsule. Tests to measure the oxidation rates of Hastelloy S and Hastelloy C-4 in air at 600 to 800/sup 0/C are continuing. Short-term test data for up to 2500-hr exposure indicated that oxidation of the two alloys adhered to parabolic rate relationships. Specimens oxidized for 5000 hr and 7500 hr exhibited erratic oxidation behavior, and the average oxidation rates were less than predicted by parabolic rate equations developed from the short-term rate data. Room-temperature tension testing of specimens oxidized in air at 600 to 800/sup 0/C for up to 7500 hr indicated that oxidation had no significant effect upon the room-temperature tensile properties of the two alloys.
Date: January 1, 1979
Creator: Fullam, H. T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Organic Rankine kilowatt isotope power system. First annual summary report, August 1, 1975--August 1, 1976

Description: Sundstrand Energy Systems is developing a Kilowatt Isotope Power System (KIPS) directed toward satisfying the higher power requirements of satellites of the 1980's. The KIPS is a plutonium oxide fueled organic Rankine cycle turbine power system which will provide design output power in the range of 500 to 2000 W(e) with a minimum of system changes. Research progress is reported on Phase I comprising: (1) flight system conceptual design and ground demonstration; (2) flight system design and ground qualification; and (3) flight system production, acceptance testing and delivery. The principal objectives of Phase I are to: (1) conceptually design the flight system, (2) based on the flight system concept, design and build the ground demonstration system (GDS), (3) conduct performance and endurance testing using electric heaters to simulate the radioisotope heat source, (4) identify and initiate long lead development efforts required to achieve the initial flight qualification hardware availability date of April 1981, and (5) finalize the flight concept design and prepare the program plan for the Phase II effort.
Date: January 1, 1976
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Quarterly report on the strontium heat source development program and the beneficial isotopes utilization program, Division of Nuclear Research and Application for October--December 1976. [WESF capsules]

Description: At Hanford, strontium is separated from the high-level waste, converted to the fluoride, and doubly encapsulated in small, high-integrity containers for subsequent long-term storage. The fluoride conversion, encapsulation and storage take place in the Waste Encapsulation and Storage Facilities (WESF). The encapsulated strontium fluoride represents an economical source of /sup 90/Sr if the WESF capsule can be licensed for heat source applications under anticipated use conditions. The objectives of this program are to obtain the data needed to license /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ heat sources and specifically the WESF /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ capsules. Research progress is reported on: (1) chemical and physical properties of /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/; (2) /sup 90/SrF/sub 2/ compatibility studies; and (3) capsule qualification and licensing. In the Beneficial Isotopes Utilization Program research progress is reported on isotopes availability, cold regions applications, WESF product utilization, and general applications of radioisotopes in army thermal systems. (TFD)
Date: January 1, 1977
Creator: Fullam, H. T. & Jarrett, J. H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

SNAP-21 program, Phase II. Deep sea radioisotope-fueled thermoelectric generator power supply system. Final design description, 10-watt system

Description: The SNAP-21 10-W system provides electrical power for use under the surface of the sea. It functions by converting the heat from a decaying radioisotope fuel into useful electrical energy. This heat energy is converted into electrical energy by a thermoelectric generator. Semiconductor-type thermoelectric materials, maintained in a temperature gradient, accomplish the conversion. The isotopic fuel supplies heat to the thermoelectric materials and sea water acts as the heat sink to maintain the temperature gradient. Other components are employed to increase efficiency and condition the electrical output to the desired form. The components performing these functions are enclosed in a pressure vessel which protects them from sea water pressure and exposure. No external inputs are required to maintain operation of the system. With this type of mechanically-static, unsupported operation, long life with no maintenance is achieved.
Date: October 1969
Creator: Wickenberg, R.F. & Harris, W.W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Light weight radioisotope heater unit (LWRHU): a technical description of the reference design

Description: The Light Weight Radioisotope Heater Unit (LWRHU), a new radioisotope heater unit for use in space missions, is a /sup 238/PuO/sub 2/-fueled unit designed to provide a thermal watt in dispersed locations on a spacecraft. The LWRHU is required to maintain the temperature of a component at a level where the component will function reliably in space. Two major constraints are placed on the unit's design; it must be as light as possible and must provide enough protection to immobilize the plutonium fuel to the maximum extent in all phases of the unit's lifetime. The four components are pelletized fuel, platinum-alloy encapsulation, pyrolytic graphite thermal insulation, and high-technology graphite ablation shell. The LWRHU is a cylinder 32 mm (1.26 in.) high and 26 mm (1.02 in.) in diameter. It weighs slightly less than 40 g(.09 lb).
Date: January 1, 1982
Creator: Tate, R.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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