U.S. Laser has
developed a fiber optic beam delivery system for use with a
galvanometer scan head delivered Nd:YAG laser used in radiation
decontamination experiments at Princeton Plasma Physics
The application requires the
scan head be mounted on a robot that accesses the contaminated
area. The laser is installed in a remote uncontaminated area
over ten meters away.
Princeton Plasma physics
Laboratory has been experimenting with a high power CW Nd:YAG laser to
decontaminate the inside of the fusion reactor. The reactor
is lined with graphite tiles. Tritium, which is used as fuel
in the reactor, becomes imbedded in the graphite tiles. PPPL
has discovered that if the tiles are heated sufficiently, the tritium
releases from the graphite and can be collected. Since the
reactor is too large to place in a furnace for heating, another method
had to be found.
Successful experiments on
individual tiles have been conducted with a 325 watt CW multi-mode
Nd:YAG laser fitted with a galvanometer scan head. The next
step in the development process was to deliver the laser beam to the
scan head through a flexible fiber optic cable. The scan head
is fitted to a specially designed robot that enters the fusion reactor
and completes the decontamination process.
Scan head technology has long
been used in laser marking capabilities. The innovation of
delivering a laser beam many meters away from the laser source will now
allow applications in facilities where, due to environmental or space
considerations, the laser cannot be located near the work surface.
U.S. Laser's solution
delivered in excess of 97% of the laser output power to the scan head
in a collimated beam.
information on Fiber Optic Beam Delivery (FOBD) is available under
Technical Notes at: http://www.uslasercorp.com/news.html#Technical
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