Mark3 operation 3e-4 torr / quad ion source @ -40kV, 1mA-9mA

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Andrew Seltzman
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Re: Mark3 operation 3e-4 torr / quad ion source @ -40kV, 1mA

Post by Andrew Seltzman » Wed Mar 29, 2017 12:01 am

The fusor has been tested with the new molecular drag pump and dry diaphragm pump. The MDP was mounted to the high vacuum solenoid valve on the fusor and was running off of it's built in AC power supply, while the diaphragm pump was running off of the fusor's 24Vdc supply. Vacuum performance was generally good. The solenoid valve between the fusor and MDP was opened at ~100s while the fusor was at ~100mTorr, pump down into the high 1e-4 range occurred with generally good performance. Deuterium pressure was held at ~8mtorr and the fusor generated ~2.3E6n/s at 40kV and 17.6mA, also generally about the same as running with the turbo station.
fusor-mdp.jpg
MDP mounted on fusor
SAM_5865a.jpg
Plasma
SAM_5866a.jpg
My last deuterium tank had run out of pressure, having only ~90psi when I got it, it lasted about a year of intermittent use. New deuterium tank has ~1750psi in it and should last a significant time. The tank is now mounted inside the fusor frame(more compact and better protected) and all VCR fittings have been upgraded to copper o-rings rather then the nylon washers I was using for testing.
SAM_5870a.jpg
The fusor's going to be hooked back up to the old turbo station until I can get the new one with the MDP built though.
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Re: Mark3 operation and upgrades

Post by Andrew Seltzman » Sun Jul 08, 2018 9:50 pm

A recent upgrade to the mark 3 has replaced the 6 way conflat cube with an 8 way kimball physics vacuum hexagon. The hexagon is considerably smaller and more compact, and has 2 more ports then the cube. The hexagon is connected to the core with a brazed ceramic isolator with copper conflat o-rings, which replaced the PEEK plastic isolator with viton o-ring. In addition the hexagon mounts an MKS 901P with integrated display, x-ray shielded 1.33CF viewport, deuterium inlet valve, Pfeiffer EVI 005 vacuum valve, an electron collector probe on a BNC feedthrough, and a germanium viewport for IR measurements. This upgrade replaced 1 plastic insulator, 2x 2.75CF viton o-rings, 1x KF40 Viton o-ring, and 1x KF16 o-ring with all metal parts, is about 4kg lighter then the previous unit, and significantly more compact, which will allow a diaphragm pump / turbo pump system to be integrated into the frame. The MKS 901P is the RS485 version which will allow several vacuum gauges and the turbopump to talk on the same bus.

The Pfeiffer EVI 005 valve was the one tested in this post
viewtopic.php?f=10&t=12155

The deuterium inlet valve was welded with this procedure:
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12284

CAD designs on the hexagon are attached below
vac-hex.jpg
vac-hex-half.jpg
6way-frame.jpg
Pictures of the completed hexagon
SAM_6445.JPG
SAM_6448.JPG
Comparison to the old vacuum cube:
SAM_6452.JPG
Vacuum tests of the new system are very encouraging, the lower conductance of the smaller valve is offset by the removal of the viton and plastic; the system now archives considerably better vacuum performance, and will max out the gauge at below 1e-5 torr.
First pump down with bakeout starting at ~700s and pressure rise with valves closed.
6way-vac.jpg
6way-rise.jpg
In addition a new digital control system is in the process of being designed, which will replace the older analog feedback controllers with an arduino controller and provide a touchscreen display for monitoring and control
SAM_6456.JPG
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Richard Hull
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Re: Mark3 operation 3e-4 torr / quad ion source @ -40kV, 1mA-9mA

Post by Richard Hull » Mon Jul 09, 2018 6:15 pm

Fabulous upgrade Andrew!! One of the better systems out there and a fusioneer that has been around a while. Thanks for the upgrade. I am envious of the valved off 1000+ second hold to about 50 microns. I am at 100 microns after about 360 seconds, but I have operated like this for about 9 years now.

Again, nice stuff! ( as an old friend used to comment to me).

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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Re: Mark3 operation 3e-4 torr / quad ion source @ -40kV, 1mA-9mA

Post by Andrew Seltzman » Mon Sep 03, 2018 9:58 pm

Latest upgrade progress:

Diaphragm pump, rough vacuum gauge, and turbo pump to be installed on fusor frame.
SAM_6520.JPG
CAD design of mounting position:
turbo-mount.png
Vacuum gauges and turbo pump will share an rs485 bus for communication. The USB to RS485 dongle used for turbo pump testing is the following:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B010K ... UTF8&psc=1

Pump actual speed, set speed, and controller current, voltage, and power.
turbo-test.jpg
Matlab control program for pfeiffer turbo pump:
Pfeiffer_TC100_rs485_plot_data.zip
(2.27 KiB) Downloaded 25 times
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Re: Mark3 operation 3e-4 torr / quad ion source @ -40kV, 1mA-9mA

Post by Andrew Seltzman » Wed Oct 17, 2018 4:38 am

More upgrades for the fusor:

Upgrades for mounting internal vacuum pumps, custom backing and mounting bracket for the TPD011 turbo pump
SAM_6850.JPG
Front and back of bracket, replaces the NW16 backing connector and provides 4x 10-32 tapped threads on a 1.75"x97mm pattern
SAM_6849.JPG
Turbo pump and diaphragm backing pump
SAM_6852.JPG
Mounting plate to hold vacuum pumps
vacuum-system.png
Locations of vacuum pump within fusor frame
vacuum-system-location.png
Thermal camera mounting system on vacuum hexagon to observe grid temperature
vacuum-hex-optics.png
Right angle bending mirror
SAM_6853.JPG
Optics path
optics-path.png
Andrew Seltzman
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Re: Mark3 operation 3e-4 torr / quad ion source @ -40kV, 1mA-9mA

Post by Andrew Seltzman » Sun Nov 11, 2018 2:48 am

The new CNC'd mounting plate for the internal vacuum pumps have arrived and the turbo and diaphragm pump are installed within the fusor frame.

Diaphragm pump, turbo pump and MKS-901P gauge for roughing line pressure measurement are mounted on the aluminum plate.
SAM_6860.JPG
Plate mounts on top of fusor
SAM_6862.JPG
Vacuum line connects turbo pump to foreline solenoid valve
SAM_6863.JPG
Pumps powered up and backing vacuum gauge added to the RS485 bus
SAM_6866.JPG
Since both gauges are now on the RS485 bus, backing vacuum and high vacuum can be measured simultaneously, pump down was measured with the turbo at standby speed, at full speed the pumping rate increases. On standby, ultimate vacuum is below 1e-5 torr.
dual-pumpdown.jpg
Testing of the thermal camera was also successful.
O202057287.jpg
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Richard Hull
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Re: Mark3 operation 3e-4 torr / quad ion source @ -40kV, 1mA-9mA

Post by Richard Hull » Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:11 pm

Wow! You are already in the show-piece class and I sense a move into museum grade exposition. This is how it is to be done if one is "long-term serious" about making a world class fusor system and sticking with it. Great work Andrew! Turbo standby mode is more than adequate to do fusion........

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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Dennis P Brown
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Re: Mark3 operation 3e-4 torr / quad ion source @ -40kV, 1mA-9mA

Post by Dennis P Brown » Sun Nov 18, 2018 12:34 pm

Very impressive system. When money is no object, one can create a very professional system!

Your thermal camera might need optical filtering to reduce the intensity since that filament will be in the thousand centigrade range. So you should keep that in mind to provide room for any such pre-lens filtering. Also, noise might be an issue from the EMF.

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Re: Mark3 operation 3e-4 torr / quad ion source @ -40kV, 1mA-9mA

Post by Andrew Seltzman » Sun Nov 18, 2018 10:27 pm

The thermal camera is viewing the grid during operation, my grid is liquid cooled so it will remain at fairly low temperatures as long as there is coolant flow. There is a little EMI noise on the video, though I have not yet cleaned up the wiring and the video is being sent over twisted pair wire.
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