The Isotope Production Facility (IPF) at the Los Alamos Neutron Science Centre (LANSCE) linear proton accelerator extracts and utilizes 100 MeV protons for the bulk production of isotopes for the DOE Isotope Program.
To facilitate the safe irradiation of isotope production targets at this facility, the target bombardment station is embedded in concrete and connected directly to a hot cell above through a 40 foot tall transfer tube filled with cooling water. A motorized chain drive system is used to move production targets between the hot cell and the target bombardment station.
We recently replaced the existing target transfer system, consisting of an old motorcycle chain, with a new push pull chain to facilitate better maintenance and reliability and to mitigate risks associated with the inability to repair the chain transfer system in the event of failure. We will present some of the installation and commissioning challenges faced during this process as well as lessons learned for future design improvements.