San Leandro, CA, United States
San Leandro, CA, United States

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Krishnan M.,Alameda Applied Science Corporation
IEEE Transactions on Plasma Science | Year: 2012

The dense plasma focus (DPF) is a Z-pinch that has been studied for 50 years. Within ten years of its discovery by Fillipov and Fillipova in Russia and Mather in the USA, this dense pinch was scaled up to 2-MA currents and neutron outputs of ∼1012. More remarkable is the fact that most of the relevant physics and scaling laws were elucidated within this first decade. The subsequent period has seen this type of pinch used as a teaching tool, developed as a portable neutron source for security applications, as a soft X-ray source for lithography, and as an energetic ion source for nanofabrication applications. This review builds upon several prior reviews. From the plasma physics standpoint, DPF physics is examined in light of fast Z-pinches to examine the similarities. More cross-fertilization between the two communities is suggested as a means to improve both types of pinches. From the applications standpoint, the many uses of DPFs are summarized to demonstrate the versatility of these pinches. Their ease of assembly and relatively low voltage operation have allowed DPFs to be disseminated worldwide as fusion testbeds (unlike their fast Z-pinch counterparts). Smaller or less economically developed nations have made valuable contributions to our understanding of the physics, as evidenced by the rich lode of publications that have advanced the field. © 2012 IEEE.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2013

Describe the problem or situation being addressed. The DOEs and publics interest in the problem should be clearly stated (typically one to three sentences). RF couplers used in all of the superconducting accelerator user facilities consist of a stainless steel base material (for thermal isolation) and a thin Cu film (for RF conductivity). The electro- chemical deposition techniques presently used to apply the Cu to the stainless steel have several draw backs. To encourage adhesion, an unwanted Ni layer is required between the Cu and stainless steel and despite this Cu adhesion is still low. A new technique is needed to produce highly adhered Cu films on stainless steel. Statement of How this Problem or Situation is Being Addressed Describe how this problem or situation is being addressed. The overall objective or approach of the combined Phase I and Phase II projects should be clearly stated (typically one to two sentences). Alameda Applied Sciences Corporation proposes to deposit a Cu thin film onto these stainless steel parts using our patented coaxial energetic deposition (CED) source. Deposition via an energetic source has the potential to create a highly adhered, quality thin film layer because thin film material is actually implanted into the substrate a few atomic layers. In Phase I, Cu films will be deposited on flat stainless steel coupons and tubes to measure the adhesion. In Phase II, a stainless steel coupler will be coated and tested. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: Summarize the future applications and/or public benefits if the project is carried over into Phase II and beyond. Do not repeat information already provided above. Stainless steel coatings are part of a & gt; $150M components market for SRF accelerators. Aside from this, a dense, well-adhered coating on stainless steel has applications in the oil/gas and chemical industry for hard and corrosion-resistant coatings on pipes.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2013

Statement of the Problem or Situation that is Being Addressed Describe the problem or situation being addressed. The DOEs and publics interest in the problem should be clearly stated (typically one to three sentences). High Energy Physics has a number of superconducting radiofrequency accelerator user facilities. The costs to build these facilities are large and materials costs can range upwards of 30-40%. Nb is the material of choice for the SRF cavities in these accelerators, however, Nb material costs are upwards of $300/lb for the bulk material. In order to reduce costs for new facilities a way must be found to reduce material costs. Statement of How this Problem or Situation is Being Addressed Describe how this problem or situation is being addressed. The overall objective or approach of the combined Phase I and Phase II projects should be clearly stated (typically one to two sentences). Alameda Applied Sciences Corporation proposes to deposit a superconducting layer of NbTiN on the inside surface of Cu cavities. Fabricating cavities out of bulk Cu would lead to a decrease in material costs while the NbTiN thin film would still maintain the low surface resistance of superconducting materials. Since NbTiN has a ~2x higher transition temperature compared with Nb further cost reductions could be realized by operating these cavities at higher temperatures. Statement of What is to be done in Phase I/II - In Phase I NbTiN will be deposited on small scale substrates and analyzed for stoichiometry as well as RRR and transition temperature. In Phase II, a Cu cavity will be coated with NbTiN and the SRF properties measured. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits Summarize the future applications and/or public benefits if the project is carried over into Phase II and beyond. Do not repeat information already provided above. The production of low cost SRF cavities has applications in all of todays SC particle accelerators, such as accelerator light sources and spallation neutron sources. As a secondary commercial benefit, TiN films have applications as hard and corrosion resistant coatings in the oil/gas and chemical industry as well as applications in RF couplers as a secondary electron emission inhibitor.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2013

Laser plasma accelerators have the potential to greatly reduce the cost and size of particle accelerators. A breakthrough in the gas profile used to accelerate the particles is required. Alameda Applied Sciences Corporation proposes to increase the repetition rate of our fast valve from 1 pulse/second today to 10 pulses/second in Ph-I and beyond 100 pulses/second in Ph-II, on the path to a 1000 pulse/second valve for commercial applications. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: Linear plasma accelerators have the potential to substantially reduce the costs of a particle accelerator. By developing an enabling technology, AASC can secure flagpole IP and license it to future accelerators.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2013

A primary goal of the Department of Energys Isotope Development and Production for Research and Applications Program (Isotope Program) within the Office of Nuclear Physics (NP) is to produce isotopes that are in short supply in the U.S. and of which there exists no or insufficient domestic commercial production capability. Isotopes in short supply are the heaviest isotopes of germanium, selenium and tellurium. Alameda Applied Sciences Corporation is going to demonstrate a method to increase the enrichment of an ionized isotope stream by increasing the number of separation stages from one to many. In Phase I, AASC will demonstrate a method to increase the separation power of plasma based isotope separation technology using a staged scheme. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: The purpose of this program is to provide a viable alternative to foreign sources of enriched isotopes for medicine and research as well as demonstrate short turn around, domestic production of enriched isotopes, which cannot be done by foreign vendors.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.00M | Year: 2013

High-current particle accelerators have need for low-impedance bellows connecting accelerating cells and in other areas of the accelerator. Typical techniques to decrease surface impedance are to use shields of superconducting Nb, however, as these shields move they produce particulates that can be detrimental to operation if they find their way into the storage ring. Alameda Applied Sciences Corporation has demonstrated high-quality Nb coatings on flexible metal bellows. This superconducting layer leads to a decrease in the surface resistance at cryogenic temperatures and a decrease in the power consumption of the bellows. AASC will further engineer this superconducting layer by improving the film adhesion to the bellows and further investigating the RF properties of a superconducting bellows. In Phase I, two stainless steel bellows were coated with Nb and RF measurements were performed to determine the Q of the resonant structure from 300 K to 5 K. Additionally, initial tests to determine the adhesion of cathodic arc films to stainless steel were carried out. In Phase II, further adhesion tests will be performed and process variables will be optimized with film adhesion in mind. Cryogenic RF tests will be carried out to further understand the behavior of a superconducting thin film bellows in a simulated environment. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: The production of a particulate-free, low-impedance bellows has application in many of todays high-current particle accelerators, such as accelerator light sources and spallation neutron sources.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2015

The DOE High Energy Physics HEP) program seeks to develop advanced accelerator technologies that reduce overall machine size and cost, and also to develop new concepts and capabilities that further scientific and commercial goals beyond HEPs discovery science mission. Superconducting Radiofrequency Accelerators consume much less power than room temperature accelerators, so can one day replace larger accelerators used in medicine and industry. Breakthroughs are needed, such as replacement of costly bulk niobium cavities by cheaper copper cavities that have a skin of niobium or higher temperature superconductors that reduce cryogenic costs. In the course of prior SBIR funded activity, and with the benefit of several other unrelated SBIR contracts from the US Navy and USAF), AASC has built up a versatile suite of high vacuum coating chambers. This suite, described further in the Facilities section, represents a capital cost of ~$1M. AASC sees an opportunity to support the SRF community by developing next- generation SRF superconductors. AASC has built relationships within the SRF community including Fermilab, LANL, JLab, HZB and CERN, while participating in DOE SBIR efforts related to SRF technologies. The innovative enhancement to the energetic condensation process proposed here will be provided by applying a bias to the cavity during the deposition step. The bias offers two potential advantages: 1) The bias increases the incident energy of the Nb ions, leading to a narrower energy spread and reduced compressive stress in the film. 2) The bias creates a thin plasma sheath at the cavity inner surface that draws ions to the surface at normal incidence. Various governments alone are expected to invest $1B over the next decade or so into superconducting accelerators. Private sector investment would match or exceed that with breakthroughs. AASC would license its knowhow and patents to larger companies so as to have an impact on this opportunity.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.00M | Year: 2015

uperconducting Radiofrequency Accelerators consume much less power than room temperature accelerators, so can one day replace larger accelerators that are used in medicine and industry. Breakthroughs are needed: replacement of costly bulk niobium cavities by cheaper copper cavities that have a skin of niobium; higher temperature superconductors that reduce cryogenic costs. Alameda Applied Sciences Corporation (AASC) has demonstrated thin films of niobium that have the superconducting properties of bulk niobium as recently measured at SLAC National Accelerator facility at Stanford University. We have coated copper cavities with niobium and are now poised to demonstrate performance at the accelerator level. In Phase II of this project we will carry forward the momentum built in the phase I and improve the performance of niobium coated copper cavities for improved RF performance. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits Various governments alone are expected to invest $1B over the next decade or so into superconducting accelerators. Private sector investment would match or exceed that with breakthroughs. AASC would license its knowhow and patents to larger companies so as to have an impact on this opportunity.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.00M | Year: 2014

Superconducting radiofrequency accelerators require a critical component that connects the radiofrequency power supply (which is warm) to the accelerator cavity (which is very cold). This coupler component must be insulating on the outside to block heat from going into the cold region. It must also be highly conducting on the inside to minimize radiofrequency power losses. No manufacturer has been able to strike a satisfactory balance. Existing methods do not work well enough to satisfy the requirements of the large new accelerators that need to order thousands of these couplers. AASC has validated a better solution in Ph-I. Alameda Applied Sciences Corporation (AASC) has demonstrated thin films of copper coated onto stainless steel that could meet the conflicting requirements of the RF coupler. Stainless steel blocks heat on the outside while copper conducts RF power efficiently on the inside. Our Ph-I coatings passed a high pressure water rinse test at Fermi Lab. The electrical conductivity of the film is characterized by a parameter called RRR that must exceed 30. Our Ph-I films gave RRR=42-64, in excess of requirements. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: Various governments are expected to invest $1B into superconducting accelerators over the next decade or so. Private sector investment would match or exceed that with breakthroughs as noted above. About 20% of this investment would go to the purchase of RF couplers. This represents a great commercial opportunity. AASC will license its knowhow and patents to larger companies to capitalize on this opportunity.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2016

The DOE High Energy Physics (HEP) program seeks to develop advanced accelerator technologies that reduce overall machine size and cost, and also to develop new concepts and capabilities that further scientific and commercial goals beyond HEP’s discovery science mission. Superconducting Radiofrequency ccelerators consume much less power than room temperature accelerators, so can one day replace larger accelerators used in medicine and industry. Breakthroughs are needed, such as replacement of costly bulk niobium cavities by cheaper copper cavities that have a skin of niobium or higher temperature superconductors that reduce cryogenic costs. Statement of how this Problem or Situation is Being Addressed – Alameda Applied Sciences Corporation (AASC) has coated copper cavities with Nb but tests at Jefferson National Accelerator Facility (JLab) and at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) showed that their superconducting performance was deficient, due most likely to the poor quality of the interior surface of the cavities before coating. In this project we will use cavities produced in a single piece via ElectroHydroForming (EHF). These cavities lack the interior weld seam of traditionally manufactured cavities and will be able to attain the desired interior surface figure without the need for expensive and time-consuming steps such as centrifugal barrel polishing and extensive electro-polishing. The seamless cavity with superior surface quality will improve the RF performance of AASC’s superconducting coatings, enhancing their application to SRF technology and leading to commercially available niobium-clad bulk copper SRF cavities. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits – Various governments alone are expected to invest $1B over the next decade or so into superconducting accelerators. Private sector investment would match or exceed that with breakthroughs. AASC would license its knowhow and patents to larger companies so as to have an impact on this opportunity. Key Words – superconducting radiofrequency accelerators, thin film superconductors

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