A unique remotely operated solution by BEIN Engineering
Ultrahigh Vacuum Seal Clamp concept design for the European Spallation Source (ESS). A unique remotely operated solution by BEIN Engineering
Radiation has always been a natural part of the environment surrounding us. The soil, air and water contribute to our exposure to ionizing radiation. Other are man-made sources resulting from mining and use of naturally radioactive materials in nuclear medicine, military and industrial applications as well as from power generation and scientific research activities.
The European Spallation Source is one of the largest science infrastructure projects being built in Europe today. The multidisciplinary research facility ESS holds the vision of building and operating the world’s most powerful neutron source, enabling scientific breakthroughs in research related to materials, energy, health and the environment, and thereby addressing some of the most important challenges of our time.
BEIN Engineering has had great pleasure of developing a unique Ultrahigh Vacuum Seal Clamp concept intended for remotely operation inside the European Spallation Source (ESS) facilities in Lund, Sweden. The first prototype of this Ultrahigh Vacuum Seal Clamp is now under construction and will be physically tested in order to verify that the design fulfill the demanding requirements. The clamp shall be remotely operated through meters of shielding via a hole with a diameter of a bottle of wine. Located in a confined space and with high radiation levels leaves human interference impossible.
Traditional Ultrahigh Vacuum Seal Clamps like chain clamps, and hinged clamps has disadvantages with respect to being opened and closed actively, evenly and without having one or more wedge-segments “stuck” due to friction between the clamp and the flanges. This design includes the required features to avoid this. The Ultrahigh Vacuum Seal Clamp will also be tested with an internal overpressure.
The project resulted in several untraditional design of clamp solutions and through a thorough evaluation one of five concepts was chosen for the next phase of prototype fabrication and testing. BEIN Engineering will now also take one of the other concepts to the next level. This design includes a special feature for perfect alignment of the two pipe ends being connected.
BEIN Engineering has a great track record of making remotely operated handling equipment such as diver- and ROV tools and gear meant for lifting and handling of pipes, umbilicals, risers and cables. We draw parallels between the harsh subsea environments with limited access and visual/physical contact to the environment we had to deal with in this challenging task.
With the sole right to the concept design, BEIN Engineering is now interested in getting in contact with other research centers and facilities which may be interested in this unique remotely operated Ultrahigh Vacuum Seal Clamp.
BEIN Engineering has also contributed with other various conceptual designs to ESS like for a custom Light Shutter System, and for a Remotely Operated Filter Handling System for their helium cooling loops you can see in this animation: https://youtu.be/MVtQ5Jk751g