TRIUMF – Rubidium Filling Station

T20 - TRIUMF

Abstract

TRIUMF is one of Canada’s leading national laboratories for particle and nuclear physics. Its impressive facilities include a cyclotron, a particle accelerator used to bombard elements with proton beams. One of the elements processed in the cyclotron is Rubidium, used to produce Strontium-82 isotopes for the medical field. In the cyclotron, Rubidium is held within special containers called “targets”. Rubidium comes in glass vials and is transferred to the targets in TRIUMF’s custom “filling station”. The filling station is in need of a redesign as it is suffers from problems of spillage (and the associated clean-up and waste) and clogged transfer tubes. In addition, the required operations are tedious and time-consuming, and its inert environment is not always maintained.

The new filling station boasts greater reliability, handling, lower process time, and simplicity. The final deliverable was a complete drawings package to produce the filling station and testing once the station was fabricated at TRIUMF’s machine shop. The total cost of the project was $5949.27 which was well within the allotted $10,000 budget. Producing a new rubidium filling station could reduce TRIUMF’s annual costs by up to $5200.

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