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The 5SDH Accelerator Tank

In this figure, we show a close-up view of the accelerator tank. It has an unusual split-tank configuration on the external pressure vessel, which was required to get the accelerator delivered to the basement of our physics building without significant building modifications. In addition, there was an option of “extra lead shielding” purchased with this machine which is wrapped around the tank under the beige paint. This unseen shielding reduces the radiation field from the operating accelerator to less than 2 mR/hour on contact everywhere, even at full terminal potential of 1.7 MV. This greatly reduced radiation hazard allowed us to remove all shielding walls from the interior of the HIBAL facility, and leads to the “open” look shown in the photograph above. It also means the State of Michigan defines a radiation safety area, where film badges are required during operation, only beyond the end of the operations console (and the workstations on the opposite side of the tank). This designation allows visitors into one end of the facility even during normal operations, which makes the facility much more attractive to prospective research students. The tank is filled with 80 PSIG SF 6, and we run a nitrogen stripper gas in the center of the column. There have been no required tank openings to date.