China's High Intensity Neutron Source
June 29, 2018
The High Intensity Neutron Source (HINEG) at the Institute of Nuclear
Energy Safety Technology (INEST), Chinese Academy of Sciences is open
for cooperative international experiments. See summary below and contact
Zhibin Chen for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org
As an essential experimental platform, the neutron source can produce
14.1 MeV mono-energetic neutrons, which is consistent with the fusion
neutron environment. Furthermore, the moderated neutron can be used to
simulate the neutron environment of advanced fission reactors for
nuclear safety experimental research, as well as neutron technology
Recently, A High Intensity Neutron Generator (HINEG) has been built at
the Institute of Nuclear Energy Safety Technology (INEST), Chinese
Academy of Sciences (CAS) by Prof. Yican WU’s team. The HINEG-I is
developed with both steady and pulse lines. The D-T neutron yield has
reached 6.4×1012 n/s, which is the highest among the other
under-operation fusion neutron sources all over the world.
HINEG-I is focusing on basic research of neutronics and technology,
including nuclear data, verification and validation of methods,
software, radiation protection, and neutron applications. Meanwhile,
HINEG-I has also successfully operated coupling with the China Lead
based Zero-Power Sub-critical/Critical Fission Reactor (CLEAR-0), which
can be used to perform physical and engineering validation of advanced
nuclear energy systems such as accelerator-driven subcritical system, or
fusion-fission hybrid systems.
Currently, a series of experiments have been carried out, including a
number of international cooperations. For example,
HINEG is an open experimental platform for scholars all over the world.
Cooperative experiments are always greatly welcomed. Moreover, the INEST
have also proposed and designed HINEG-II and HINEG-III with neutron
yields of 1015~1016 n/s and more 1018 n/s,
which will focus on material irradiation damage, neutronics performance of
key components, and the multi-physics coupling test.
- A neutronics experiment of dual function lithium-lead test blanket
module (DFLL-TBM) mockup was carried out on HINEG, which is a full scale
neutronics validation experiment for liquid breeder blanket. The tritium
production ratio and neutron flux distribution obtained from this
experiment could provide effective data support for neutronics design
optimization and neutronics software validation for ITER project. In
addition, experiments for other types of blankets is ongoing.
- Neutrons could damage the normal human cells, because they cause
more double-strand breaks of DNA than γ rays which are difficult to be
repaired. However, based on HINEG, it is found that heme oxygenase (HO-1)
can alleviate cells from neutron induced DNA damage. The study provides
a potential way for low-dose neutron radiation protection.
- Fast Neutron radiography is an effective non-destructive testing
technique, which has high penetrability and can detect light materials
in thick heavy metal. The fast neutron radiography experiments indicate
contrast sensitivity <10% and spatial resolution <0.5 mm, which can be
used in the detection of nuclear fuel, turbine blade, concrete
corrosion, antiques, etc.