Frazer-Nash to study lead-lithium flow loop cooling for STEP

20 January 2020

STEPThe UK Atomic Energy Authority has appointed Frazer-Nash to deliver a concept study for a lead-lithium flow loop cooling system for the design of the potential cooling blanket for the Spherical Tokamak for Energy Production (STEP) programme.

STEP aims to deliver a commercially viable prototype fusion reactor by 2040. The project will involve engineers and scientists from UKAEA as well as its supply chain, academia and other partners.  

Frazer-Nash’s new build and fusion business manager, Steve Lawler, said: “Removing heat flux from the fusion reactor efficiently is key to producing a net energy gain. With a high boiling point temperature, tritium breeding capabilities and thermal properties, liquid lead-lithium is considered as a potential blanket coolant to deliver this heat removal by tokamak designers.”

He said the concept study would “play a key role" in developing the UK’s knowledge and experience of flowing lead-lithium for use in a tokamak.

Liquid lead-lithium has long been considered as a blanket coolant by multiple fusion organisations due to its high boiling point, tritium breeding capabilities and thermal properties.

UKAEA has awarded a front-end engineering design contract for a lead-lithium flow loop. The aims of the loop are to study the effects of a uniform magnetic field on flowing lead-lithium and measure corrosion of different materials and pipe geometries within a defined test section.

Photo: Illustration of STEP concept (CCFE)

Privacy Policy
We have updated our privacy policy. In the latest update it explains what cookies are and how we use them on our site. To learn more about cookies and their benefits, please view our privacy policy. Please be aware that parts of this site will not function correctly if you disable cookies. By continuing to use this site, you consent to our use of cookies in accordance with our privacy policy unless you have disabled them.