Oak Ridge National Labs is located on the outskirts of the city. The City of Oak Ridge was created in 1942 for a single purpose - secret production of the atomic bomb for World War II. However, with the end of the war came a new beginning for Oak Ridge. The "secret city" quickly became one of the world's foremost centers of research and development and the advanced applications of high technology. This community born of war has become a city thriving with life, beauty, culture and opportunity.
The Y12 facility is a heavily guarded store house for weapons grade U and Pu. Located in Oak Ridge, TN, it is the center for high precision systems. My experience was within the Engineering Technology Division's, Photonics and Measurement Systems group.
The majority of my research time was spent at the heavily guarded Y12 facility working with my advisor, Dr. Allison. Y12's Energy Defense Program assignments include manufacturing and reworking nuclear weapon components, dismantling nuclear weapon components returned from the national arsenal, serving as the nation's storehouse of special nuclear materials (a Fort Knox of weapons grade uranium and plutonium), and providing special production support to programs. Another mission of long standing is the support of other federal agencies through the Work-for-Others program. A more recent focus, implemented through the Oak Ridge Centers for Manufacturing Technology (ORCMT), is to apply unique expertise, initially developed for highly specialized military purposes, to a wide range of manufacturing problems to support the capabilities of the U.S. industrial base. Y-12's expertise includes concept development, design and specification capabilities, and an ability to build prototypes and configure integrated manufacturing processes.
A photo of myself and a spallation neutron source target cavity. Also a picture of my advisor, Dr. Steve Allison.
The main thrust of my research for the Department of Energy included investigate the thermal shock imposed by a neutron producing particle beam incident on a mercury filled target cavity! The information gleamed will be used to assist in future design of permanent target geometries. The pressure and temperature of the mercury, along with the deformation of the target cavity, were measured during interaction with a 30ns pulse of 10^13 protons having energies of approximately 0.8 GeV.