Development of sodium leak detection technology using laser resonance ionization mass spectrometry - Design and functional test using prototype sodium detection system

Takafumi Aoyama, Koki Okazaki, Chikara Ito, Hideki Harano, Kenichi Watanabe, Tetsuo Iguchi

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

In a sodium-cooled fast reactor, highly sensitive technology is required to detect small amounts of sodium leaking from the cooling system piping or components. The conventional sodium leak detectors have a fundamental difficulty in improving the detection sensitivity for a sodium leak because of the presence of salinity (23NaCl) in the atmosphere around the components and piping of cooling systems. In order to overcome this problem, an innovative technology has been developed to selectively detect the radioactive sodium (22Na) produced by a neutron reaction in the primary cooling system using Laser Resonance Ionization Mass Spectrometry (RIMS). In this method, sodium ions produced with the two processes of (1) atomization of sodium aerosols and (2) resonance ionization of sodium atom, are detected selectively using a time-of-flight mass spectrometer. The 22Na can be distinguished from the stable isotope (23Na) by mass spectrometry, which is the advantage of RIMS comparing to the other methods. The design and the construction of the prototype system based on fundamental experiments are shown in the paper. The aerodynamic lens was newly introduced, which can transfer aerosols at atmospheric pressure into a vacuum chamber while increasing the aerosol density at the same time. Furthermore, the ionization process was applied by using the external electric field after resonance exciting from the ground level to the Rydberg level in order to increase the ionization efficiency. The preliminary test results using the stable isotope (23Na) showed that prototype system could easily detect sodium aerosol of 100 ppb, equivalent to the sensitivity of the conventional detectors.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Congress on Advances in Nuclear Power Plants 2009, ICAPP 2009
PublisherAtomic Energy Society of Japan
Pages867-874
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781617386084
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Congress on Advances in Nuclear Power Plants 2009, ICAPP 2009 - Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan
Duration: May 10 2009May 14 2009

Publication series

NameInternational Congress on Advances in Nuclear Power Plants 2009, ICAPP 2009
Volume2

Other

OtherInternational Congress on Advances in Nuclear Power Plants 2009, ICAPP 2009
Country/TerritoryJapan
CityShinjuku, Tokyo
Period5/10/095/14/09

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering

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