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Journal Articles

Water leakage due to the welding defect and improvement to reach 1-MW beam operation in the mercury target of J-PARC

Kogawa, Hiroyuki; Wakui, Takashi; Naoe, Takashi; Haga, Katsuhiro; Takada, Hiroshi; Futakawa, Masatoshi

Journal of Nuclear Science and Technology, 57(5), p.487 - 494, 2020/05

 Times Cited Count:0 Percentile:100(Nuclear Science & Technology)

Neutron flux per pulse reached world record at neutron source in the J-PARC. In the J-PARC, mercury target system is used as a spallation neutron source. A target vessel has the multi-walled protection system that comprises a mercury vessel enclosed with a double-walled water shroud. This is to prevent the leakage of the mercury outside the mercury vessel. The multi-walled structure needed to be complicated with a lot of welding lines. However, during the operation, we faced an unscheduled shutdown due to water leakage to the intermediate layer between the mercury vessel and water shroud. An investigation on the cause of the leakage was carried out. It is deduced that the leakage path was formed due to the crack propagation from welding defects that is caused by the complicated multi-walled structure. The crack propagation is attributed to the repeated stress by pressure waves generated in the mercury target. Based on the investigation results, the design was improved to remove the welding line on the complicated structure and to realize the stable operation with 1 MW proton beam.

Journal Articles

Mitigation of cavitation damage in J-PARC mercury target vessel

Naoe, Takashi; Kinoshita, Hidetaka; Kogawa, Hiroyuki; Wakui, Takashi; Wakai, Eiichi; Haga, Katsuhiro; Takada, Hiroshi

JPS Conference Proceedings (Internet), 28, p.081004_1 - 081004_6, 2020/02

The beam window of the mercury target vessel in J-PARC is severely damaged by the cavitation. The cavitation damage is a crucial factor to limit lifetime of the target because it increases with the beam power. Therefore, mitigating cavitation damage is an important issue to operate the target stably for long time at 1 MW. At J-PARC, to mitigate the cavitation damage: gas microbubbles are injected into mercury for suppressing pressure waves, and double-walled structure with a narrow channel of 2 mm in width to form high-speed mercury flow ($$sim$$4m/s) has been adopted. After operation, the beam window was cut to inspect the effect of the cavitation damage mitigation on inner wall. We optimized cutting conditions through the cold cutting tests, succeeding in cutting the target No.2 (without damage mitigation technologies) smoothly in 2017, and target No.8 with damage mitigation technologies. In the workshop, progress of cavitation damage observation for the target vessel will be presented.

Journal Articles

Recent status of the pulsed spallation neutron source at J-PARC

Takada, Hiroshi; Haga, Katsuhiro

JPS Conference Proceedings (Internet), 28, p.081003_1 - 081003_7, 2020/02

At the Japan Proton Accelerator Research Complex (J-PARC), the pulsed spallation neutron source has been in operation with a redesigned mercury target vessel from October 2017 to July 2018, during which the operational beam power was restored to 500 kW and the operation with a 1-MW equivalent beam was demonstrated for one hour. The target vessel includes a gas-micro-bubbles injector and a 2-mm-wide narrow mercury flow channel at the front end as measures to suppress the cavitation damage. After the operating period, it was observed that the cavitation damage at the 3-mm-thick front end of the target vessel could be suppressed less than 17.5 $$mu$$m.

Journal Articles

New design and fabrication technology applied in mercury target vessel #8 of J-PARC

Wakui, Takashi; Wakai, Eiichi; Kogawa, Hiroyuki; Naoe, Takashi; Hanano, Kohei; Haga, Katsuhiro; Takada, Hiroshi; Shimada, Tsubasa*; Kanomata, Kenichi*

JPS Conference Proceedings (Internet), 28, p.081002_1 - 081002_6, 2020/02

A mercury target vessel of J-PRAC is designed with a triple-walled structure consisting of the mercury vessel and a double-walled water shroud with internal and external vessels. During the beam operation at 500 kW in 2015, small water leakages from a water shroud of the mercury target vessel occurred twice. Design, fabrication and inspection processes were improved based on the lessons learned from the target failures. The total length of welding lines at the front of the mercury target vessel decreases drastically to approximately 55% by adopting monolithic structure cut out from a block of stainless steel by the wire-electrical discharge machining. Thorough testing of welds by radiographic testing and ultrasonic testing was conducted. The fabrication of the mercury target vessel #8 was finished on September 2017 and the beam operation using it started. Stable beam operation at 500 kW has been achieved and it could experience the maximum beam power of 1 MW during a beam test.

JAEA Reports

Improvement of accumulator in cryogenic hydrogen system used for 1-MW pulsed spallation neutron source

Aso, Tomokazu; Tatsumoto, Hideki*; Otsu, Kiichi*; Kawakami, Yoshihiko*; Komori, Shinji*; Muto, Hideki*; Takada, Hiroshi

JAEA-Technology 2019-013, 77 Pages, 2019/09


At Materials and Life Science experimental Facility (MLF) of the Japan Proton Accelerator Research Complex (J-PARC), a 1-MW pulsed spallation neutron source is equipped with a cryogenic hydrogen system which circulates liquid hydrogen (20 K and 1.5 MPa) to convert high energy neutrons generated at a mercury target to cold neutrons at three moderators with removing nuclear heat of 3.8 kW deposited there. The cryogenic system includes an accumulator with a bellows structure in order to absorb pressure fluctuations generated by the nuclear heat deposition in the system. Welded inner bellows of the first accumulator was failured during operation, forcing us to improve the accumulator to have sufficient pressure resistance and longer life-time. We have developed elemental technologies for manufacturing welded bellows of the accumulator by a thick plate with high pressure resistance, succeeding to find optimum welding conditions. We fabricated a prototype bellows block and carried out an endurance test by adding a pressure change of 2 MPa repeatedly. As a result, the prototype bellows was successfully in use exceeding the design life of 10,000 times. Since distortions given during welding and assembling affect functionality and lifetime of the bellows, we set the levelness of each element of the bellows as within 0.1$$^{circ}$$. The improved accumulator has already been in operation for about 25,000 hours as of January 2019, resulting that the number of strokes reached to 16,000. In July 2018, we demonstrated that the accumulator could suppress the pressure fluctuation generated by the 932 kW beam injection as designed. As current operational beam power is 500 kW, the current cryogenic hydrogen system could be applicable for stable operation at higher power in the future.

Journal Articles

Optimum temperature for HIP bonding invar alloy and stainless steel

Wakui, Takashi; Ishii, Hideaki*; Naoe, Takashi; Kogawa, Hiroyuki; Haga, Katsuhiro; Wakai, Eiichi; Takada, Hiroshi; Futakawa, Masatoshi

Materials Transactions, 60(6), p.1026 - 1033, 2019/06

 Times Cited Count:0 Percentile:100(Materials Science, Multidisciplinary)

The mercury target has large size as 1.3$$times$$1.3$$times$$2.5 m$$^{3}$$. In view of reducing the amount of wastes, we studied the structure so that the fore part could be separated. The flange is required to have high seal performance less than 1$$times$$10$$^{-6}$$ Pa m$$^{3}$$/s. Invar with low thermal expansion is a candidate. Due to its low stiffness, however, the flange may deform when it is fastened by bolts. Practically invar is reinforced with stainless steel where all interface between them has to be bonded completely with the HIP bonding. In this study, we made specimens at four temperatures and conducted tensile tests. The specimen bonded at 973 K had little diffusion layer, and so fractured at the interface. The tensile strength reduced with increasing the temperature, and the reduced amount was about 10% at 1473 K. The analyzed residual stresses near the interface increased by 50% at maximum. Then, we concluded that the optimum temperature was 1173 K.

JAEA Reports

Progress of general control system for Materials and Life Science Experimental Facility at J-PARC

Sakai, Kenji; Oi, Motoki; Takada, Hiroshi; Kai, Tetsuya; Nakatani, Takeshi; Kobayashi, Yasuo*; Watanabe, Akihiko*

JAEA-Technology 2018-011, 57 Pages, 2019/01


For safely and efficiently operating a spallation neutron source and a muon target, a general control system (GCS) operates within Materials and Life Science Experimental Facility (MLF). GCS administers operation processes and interlocks of many instruments. It consists of several subsystems such as an integral control system (ICS), interlock systems (ILS), shared servers, network system, and timing distribution system (TDS). Although GCS is an independent system that controls the target stations, it works closely with the control systems of the accelerators and other facilities in J-PARC. Since the first beam injection, GCS has operated stably without any serious troubles after modification based on commissioning for operation and control. Then, significant improvements in GCS such as upgrade of ICS by changing its framework software and function enhancement of ILS were proceeded until 2015. In this way, many modifications have been proceeded in the entire GCS during a period of approximately ten years after start of beam operation. Under these situation, it is important to comprehend upgrade history and present status of GCS in order to decide its upgrade plan. This report summarizes outline, structure, roles and functions of GCS in 2017.

Journal Articles

Ultrasonic inspection technique for weld part of mercury target vessel for spallation neutron source

Wakui, Takashi; Wakai, Eiichi; Naoe, Takashi; Kogawa, Hiroyuki; Haga, Katsuhiro; Takada, Hiroshi; Shintaku, Yohei*; Li, T.*; Kanomata, Kenichi*

Choompa Techno, 30(5), p.16 - 20, 2018/10

A mercury target vessel has been used for the spallation neutron source at J-PARC. It has a complicated multi-layered structure composed of a mercury target and a surrounding double-walled water shroud, which is assembled with thin plates (minimum thickness of 3 mm) by welding. Thus, welding inspection during the manufacturing process is important. We investigated the applicability of new ultrasonic inspections using specimens (thickness of 3 mm) with defects to improve the accuracy of welding inspection for the mercury target vessel. Immersion ultrasonic testing using a probe (frequency of 50 MHz) could detect a spherical defect with a diameter of 0.2 mm. The size was smaller than target value of 0.4 mm. The length of unwelded region estimated using the phased array ultrasonic testing corresponded with the actual length (0.8 - 1.5 mm).

Journal Articles

Effect of welding on gigacycle fatigue strength of austenitic stainless steels

Naoe, Takashi; Wakui, Takashi; Kogawa, Hiroyuki; Wakai, Eiichi; Haga, Katsuhiro; Takada, Hiroshi

Advanced Experimental Mechanics, 3, p.123 - 128, 2018/08

A mercury target vessel, composed of SUS316L, is used for the pulsed neutron source and is assembled via TIG welding. While in operation, the target vessel suffers ca. 10$$^9$$ loading cycles with a high strain rate of ca. 50 s$$^{-1}$$ because of the proton-beam-induced pressure waves in mercury. The gigacycle fatigue strength for solution annealed SUS316L stainless steels and its welded specimens were investigated through ultrasonic fatigue tests. The experimental results showed that an obvious fatigue limit was not observed at fewer than 10$$^9$$ cycles for the base metal. In the case of no weld defects observed via penetration tests, the fatigue strength of the removed-weld-bead specimen, in which the weld lines were arranged at the center of the specimen, appeared to be slightly higher than that of the base metal. By contrast, as-welded specimens with the weld bead intact showed apparent degradation of the fatigue strength owing to the stress concentration around the weld toe.

Journal Articles

Cavitation damage in double-walled mercury target vessel

Naoe, Takashi; Wakui, Takashi; Kinoshita, Hidetaka; Kogawa, Hiroyuki; Haga, Katsuhiro; Harada, Masahide; Takada, Hiroshi; Futakawa, Masatoshi

Journal of Nuclear Materials, 506, p.35 - 42, 2018/08

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:70.85(Materials Science, Multidisciplinary)

A mercury target vessel made of 316L SS is damaged due to the cavitation caused by the pressure waves in mercury. Cavitation damage reduces the structural integrity of the target front, called "beam window", being major factor to determine the lifetime of target vessel. Aiming at mitigating the cavitation damage by faster mercury flow in narrow channel, we employed a target vessel with a double-walled structure at the beam window along with a gas microbubbles injection. After operating the double-walled target vessel with a beam power of 300 to 500 kW, we cut out the beam window using an annular cutter to examine the damage inside it, and found that damages with maximum pit depth of approximately 25 $$mu$$m distributed in a belt on the specimen facing narrow channel. Furthermore, numerical simulation result showed that the distribution of negative pressure period from beam injection to 1 ms was correlated with the damage distribution in the narrow channel. It was suggested that the cavitation induced by relatively short negative pressure period contributed to the damage formation.

Journal Articles

Recent studies for structural integrity evaluation and defect inspection of J-PARC spallation neutron source target vessel

Wakui, Takashi; Wakai, Eiichi; Naoe, Takashi; Shintaku, Yohei*; Li, T.*; Murakami, Kazuya*; Kanomata, Kenichi*; Kogawa, Hiroyuki; Haga, Katsuhiro; Takada, Hiroshi; et al.

Journal of Nuclear Materials, 506, p.3 - 11, 2018/08

 Times Cited Count:0 Percentile:100(Materials Science, Multidisciplinary)

The mercury target vessel is designed as multi-walled structure with thin wall (min. 3 mm), and assembled by welding. In order to estimate the structural integrity of the vessel, it is important to measure the defects in welding accurately. For nondestructive tests of the welding, radiographic testing is applicable but it is difficult to detect for some defect shapes. Therefore it is effective to do ultrasonic testing together with it. Because ultrasonic methods prescribed in JIS inspect on the plate with more than 6 mm in thickness, these methods couldn't be applied as the inspection on the vessel with thin walls. In order to develop effective method, we carried out measurements using some testing method on samples with small defect whose size is specified. In the case of the latest phased array method, measured value agreed with actual size. It was found that this method was applicable to detect defects in the thin-walled structure for which accurate inspection was difficult so far.

Journal Articles

Off-gas processing system operations for mercury target vessel replacement at J-PARC

Kai, Tetsuya; Uchida, Toshitsugu; Kinoshita, Hidetaka; Seki, Masakazu; Oi, Motoki; Wakui, Takashi; Haga, Katsuhiro; Kasugai, Yoshimi; Takada, Hiroshi

Journal of Physics; Conference Series, 1021(1), p.012042_1 - 012042_4, 2018/06

 Times Cited Count:0 Percentile:100

Journal Articles

Recovery of helium refrigerator performance for cryogenic hydrogen system at J-PARC MLF

Aso, Tomokazu; Teshigawara, Makoto; Hasegawa, Shoichi; Muto, Hideki; Aoyagi, Katsuhiro; Nomura, Kazutaka; Takada, Hiroshi

Journal of Physics; Conference Series, 1021(1), p.012085_1 - 012085_4, 2018/06

Journal Articles

Present fabrication status of spare moderators and reflector in J-PARC spallation neutron source

Teshigawara, Makoto; Harada, Masahide; Oi, Motoki; Takada, Hiroshi

Journal of Physics; Conference Series, 1021(1), p.012061_1 - 012061_4, 2018/06

 Times Cited Count:0 Percentile:100

At the spallation neutron source of J-PARC, the structural material of moderators and reflector, such as an aluminum alloy, is going to reach to the design value (20 DPA) around 2020 by an accumulation of irradiation-damage. We started the fabrication of the spare moderators and reflector in 2013 with following design of two improvements. The invar joints, such as invar-A6061 and invar- SS316L joints were newly developed to utilize them in the cryogenic multi-layered pipe with 5th annular geometry, improving the fabrication procedure much simple. The Gold-Indium-Cadmium (Au-In-Cd) as a decoupler material is also developed to reduce residual radioactivity of the used components significantly for the decoupled moderator. In this presentation, we will report these results and progress of fabrication.

Journal Articles

Neutron source

Takada, Hiroshi

Kasokuki Handobukku, p.330 - 333, 2018/04

Spallation neutron source provides thermal and cold neutrons for materials researches. Those neutrons are obtained by slowing down the neutrons generated in a neutron production target by injecting high energy protons in surrounding reflector and moderators. This article introduces basic characteristics of the neutron production target at first, and then explains the characteristics of moderator, especially the design to generate high intensity and high quality neutron pulses with narrow width in the moderators used in the 1-MW spallation neutron source at J-PARC. Furthermore, the design procedure of the spallation neutron source is described.

Journal Articles

Current status of the high intensity pulsed spallation neutron source at J-PARC

Takada, Hiroshi

Plasma and Fusion Research (Internet), 13(Sp.1), p.2505013_1 - 2505013_8, 2018/03

The pulsed spallation neutron source of Japan Proton Accelerator Research Complex (J-PARC) has been supplying users with high intensity and sharp pulse cold neutrons using the moderators with following distinctive features; (1) 100% para-hydrogen for increasing pulse peak intensity with decreasing pulse tail, (2) cylindrical shape with 14 cm diam.$$times$$12 cm long for providing high intensity neutrons to wide neutron extraction angles of 50.8$$^{circ}$$, (3) neutron absorber made from Ag-In-Cd alloy to make pulse width narrower and pulse tails lower. Actually, it was measured at a low power operation that high neutron intensity of 4.5$$times$$10$$^{12}$$ n/cm$$^{2}$$/s/sr could be emitted from the coupled moderator surface for 1-MW operation, and a superior resolution of $$Delta$$d/d = 0.035% was achieved at a beamline (BL8) with a poisoned moderator, where d is the d-spacing of reflection. Towards the goal to achieve the target operation at 1-MW for 5000 h in a year, technical developments to mitigate cavitation damages on the target vessel with injecting gas micro-bubbles into mercury target and design improvement of target vessel structure to reducing welds and bolt connections as much as possible are under way.

Journal Articles

Technical investigation on small water leakage incident occurrence in mercury target of J-PARC

Haga, Katsuhiro; Kogawa, Hiroyuki; Wakui, Takashi; Naoe, Takashi; Takada, Hiroshi

Journal of Nuclear Science and Technology, 55(2), p.160 - 168, 2018/02

 Times Cited Count:4 Percentile:23.21(Nuclear Science & Technology)

The mercury target vessel used for the spallation neutron source in J-PARC has multi-walled structure made of stainless steel type 316L, which comprises a mercury vessel and a water shroud. In 2015, water leak incidents from the water shroud occurred while the mercury target was operated with a proton beam power of 500 kW. Several investigations were conducted to identify the cause of failure. The results of the visual inspections, mockup tests, and analytical evaluations suggested that the water leak was caused by the combination of two factors. One was the diffusion bonding failure due to the large thermal stress induced by welding of the bolt head, which fixes the mercury vessel and the water shroud, during the fabrication process. The other was the thermal fatigue failure of the seal weld due to the repetitive beam trip during the operating period. These target failures point to the importance of eliminating initial defects from welding lines and to secure the rigidity and reliability of welded structures. The next mercury target was fabricated with an improved design which adopted parts of monolithic structure machined by wire EDM to reduce welding lines, and intensified inspections to eliminate the initial defects. The operation with the improved target is planned to be started in October 2017.

Journal Articles

Current status of pulsed spallation neutron source of J-PARC

Takada, Hiroshi

JAEA-Conf 2017-001, p.51 - 56, 2018/01

A pulsed spallation neutron source of Japan Proton Accelerator Research Complex (J-PARC) is aimed at promoting a variety of cutting-edge materials researches at state-of-the-art neutron instruments with neutrons generated by a 3-GeV proton beam with a power of 1-MW at a repetition rate of 25 Hz. In 2015, for the first time it received 1-MW equivalent proton beam pulse, and the beam power for user program was ramped up to 500 kW. The moderator system of the neutron source was optimized to use (1) 100% para-hydrogen for increasing pulse peak intensity with decreasing pulse tail, (2) cylindrical shape with 14 cm diam. $$times$$ 12 cm long for providing high intensity neutrons to wide neutron extraction angles of 50.8 degrees, (3) neutron absorber made from Ag-In-Cd alloy to make pulse widths narrower and pulse tails lower. As a result, it gives highest intensity pulsed neutrons per incident proton in the world. Towards the goal to achieve the target operation at 1-MW for 5000 h in a year, efforts to mitigate cavitation damages at the target vessel front with injecting gas micro-bubbles into the mercury target are under way. Also, improvement of structural target vessel design is an urgent issue since there was failure twice at the water shroud of the mercury target due to the thermal stress during operating periods at 500 kW in 2015.

Journal Articles

Implementation of a low-activation Au-In-Cd decoupler into the J-PARC 1 MW short pulsed spallation neutron source

Teshigawara, Makoto; Ikeda, Yujiro; Oi, Motoki; Harada, Masahide; Takada, Hiroshi; Kakishiro, Masanori*; Noguchi, Gaku*; Shimada, Tsubasa*; Seita, Kyoichi*; Murashima, Daisuke*; et al.

Nuclear Materials and Energy (Internet), 14, p.14 - 21, 2018/01

 Times Cited Count:0 Percentile:100(Nuclear Science & Technology)

We developed an Au-In-Cd (AuIC) decoupler material to reduce induced radioactivity instead of Ag-In-Cd one, which has a cut off energy of 1eV. In order to implement it into an actual moderator-reflector assembly, a number of critical engineering issues need to be resolved with regard to large-sized bonding between AuIC and A5083 alloys by the hot isostatic pressing process. We investigated this process in terms of the surface conditions, sizes, and heat capacities of large AuIC alloys. We also show a successful implementation of an AuIC decoupler into a reflector assembly, resulting in a remarkable reduction of radioactivity by AuIC compared to AIC without sacrificing neutronic performance.

Journal Articles

Materials and Life Science Experimental Facility at the Japan Proton Accelerator Research Complex, 1; Pulsed spallation neutron source

Takada, Hiroshi; Haga, Katsuhiro; Teshigawara, Makoto; Aso, Tomokazu; Meigo, Shinichiro; Kogawa, Hiroyuki; Naoe, Takashi; Wakui, Takashi; Oi, Motoki; Harada, Masahide; et al.

Quantum Beam Science (Internet), 1(2), p.8_1 - 8_26, 2017/09

At the Japan Proton Accelerator Research Complex (J-PARC), a pulsed spallation neutron source provides neutrons with high intensity and narrow pulse width to promote researches on a variety of science in the Materials and life science experimental facility. It was designed to be driven by the proton beam with an energy of 3 GeV, a power of 1 MW at a repetition rate of 25 Hz, that is world's highest power level. A mercury target and three types of liquid para-hydrogen moderators are core components of the spallation neutron source. It is still on the way towards the goal to accomplish the operation with a 1 MW proton beam. In this paper, distinctive features of the target-moderator-reflector system of the pulsed spallation neutron source are reviewed.

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