The MTEQ group specialises in Manufacturing Technology and Equipment Qualification. The team takes on research and testing projects that require innovative manufacturing solutions for customers that include global fusion projects. Their work on these programmes includes:
- Assessing existing components
- Advancing the manufacturability of new component designs
- Supporting the commercial manufacture of components
- Providing technical support to other UKAEA departments
There are four main areas that the MTEQ group covers:
These projects address the feasibility, longevity and optimisation of production and joining processes, to make intricate components and assemblies capable of surviving the effects of rigorous environments.
Evaluation and inspection
MTEQ is developing new procedures for reviewing and evaluating challenging fusion materials. These will identify faults, which may affect the level of performance required. In addition, inspection techniques that can be operated remotely are being investigated to carry out ‘in situ’ monitoring inside tokamaks.
CHIMERA will be the only machine in the world able to test components under the unique combination of conditions encountered in large fusion devices, such as ITER. It will simultaneously subject components to:
- High temperatures
- High heat flux
- Static and pulsed magnetic loads
- Thermal cycling, fatigue, creep and other failure modes
- Under vacuum, air or inert gas
These projects aim to develop in-depth knowledge and experience of engineering design codes and standards, in particular those associated with the fusion industry, pressure vessels and advanced welding techniques.
They can be used to progress new methodologies and best practice in the manufacturing of components for testing and qualification under the conditions associated with fusion.