Memorias de investigación
Research Project:
Synergetic effects in first wall materials and final optics for inertial fusion reactors

Research Areas
  • Physics - Structure of materials,
  • Physics - Radiation physics

One of the main challenges for nuclear fusion technology is the development of appropriate materials for the hostile environment of a fusion reactor. The major difficulty to make accurate predictions on materials performance stems from the simultaneous interactions (synergetic effects) of different types of radiation (neutrons, energetic photons, charged particles) with the surrounding materials. In particular, for Inertial Confinement Fusion (ICF) reactors with direct drive targets (for instance HiPER), the major threats to target facing materials come from the arrival of high fluxes of a large variety of energetic particles (mainly D, T, He and C) shortly after the deposition of a high power pulse of X-rays and the subsequent passage of a high flux of neutrons (energy up to 14 MeV/neutron). In order to study the combined effect of light species (D/He) and heavier ions (C) on first wall materials and final optics components subjected to ICF radiation conditions, one needs to use a multi-beam system. We propose to use the double beam facility available at the group of Ion Physics in Forshcugzentrum Rossendorf. We will study poly- and nano-crystalline W as a primary first wall candidate and SiC based materials as an alternative. For the final optics, we will compare high quality optical graded silica samples with KU1 silica, well known for its radiation degradation resistance. In addition, we will consider the performance of (unavoidable) anti-reflective coatings (e.g. hafnia) subjected to ICF ion irradiation. For this purpose our plan is to reproduce the effects due to simultaneous implantation of C-He/D typical of an ICF reactor. The study will be carried out at different sample temperatures and up to doses of 1017 cm-2, which are equivalent to 100000 shots of 20 MJ direct drive targets (as those planned for the first phases of HiPER). The diffusion and retention (depth profiling) of light atoms will be studied by resonance nuclear reaction analysis (RNRA) as a function of temperature and thermal desorption spectroscopy (TDS). The structural and morphological properties of implanted samples will be investigated by X-ray diffraction (XRD), atomic force microscopy (AFM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The combined use of these techniques will make possible the understanding of the combined effects of damage and gas retention (bubble formation) and the development of macroscopic detrimental effects such as swelling and blistering under realistic ICF conditions. The mechanical (W) and optical (silica) properties will also be investigated after irradiation to relate the observed irradiation effects with the possible modification of key properties. Our final goal is to understand the combined mechanisms of ion damage and light species implantation. A deep understanding on these effects is necessary for us, as active members of HiPER and Technofusion, to take decisions on materials choice and will certainly contribute to the establishment of the operational windows for the selected materials.
Project type
Proyectos y convenios en convocatorias públicas competitivas
Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación
Entity Nationality
Entity size
Pequeña Empresa (11-50)
Granting date

Research Group, Departaments and Institutes related
  • Creador: Departamento: Ingeniería Nuclear