SNS restart slowed

SNS Building MarkerOperations at the Spallation Neutron Source have resumed, but the restart has gone a little slower than anticipated because of an equipment failure over the weekend.

“The good news is that we have beam on target for our users as of this morning,” Kevin Jones, director of ORNL’s Research Accelerator Division, said via email. “However, we aren’t at high power yet because we had to address the consequences of an equipment failure over the weekend that took a little longer to work through than usual.”

Jones said the restart, following a brief maintenance period, is about 24 hours behind schedule. That is also slowing the plans to significantly ramp up the beam power over the operating level used in recent months.

“Right now we are at over 0.5 MW, and slowly raising the power to condition the stripping foil,” Jones said. “This is a prescribed procedure that we go through after each restart to ensure the longevity of the foil.  We should be at 1 MW or so tomorrow (Wednesday), and will then begin raising the power as we are able.”

The plan is to operate the systems at about 1.25 megawatts.

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About Frank Munger

Senior Writer Frank Munger covers the Dept. of Energy's Oak Ridge facilities and many related topics — nuclear weapons, nuclear waste and other things nuclear, environmental cleanup and science of all sorts. Atomic City Underground is, first and foremost, a news blog, but there's room for analysis, opinion and random thoughts that have no place else to go.