The Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, is an accelerator driven neutron scattering facility for materials research. Presently SNS is capable to operate at 1.4 MW proton beam power incident on a mercury target with a proton beam energy of 1 GeV and 60 Hz repetition rate.
SNS target system components are periodically replaced because they reach their end-of-life due to radiation induced material damage. Target vessel, which houses mercury target, is exchanged about two-three times per year and the proton beam window (PBW) is exchanged every two – three years.
Each spent structure that leaves the SNS site requires supporting documentation with radionuclide inventory and dose rate prediction for the time of the transportation. Neutronics analyses are performed, assuming realistic irradiation history and decay case to ensure that the container/package, housing the structure, is compliant with the waste management regulations. Analyses are complex due to geometry, multi-code usage and following data treatment.
To validate analyses, measurements of dose rates from the spent target vessel # 13 and PBW module #5 were performed. Neutronics analyses were performed to calculate residual dose rates from both structures for the time of measurements.