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Processes 2016, 4(4), 40;

Design of a Multi-Tube Pd-Membrane Module for Tritium Recovery from He in DEMO

Dipartimento di Economia ed Impresa, University of Tuscia, Via del Paradiso 47, Viterbo 01100, Italy
Dipartimento FSN-ENEA C. R. Frascati, via E. Fermi 45, Frascati, Roma 00044, Italy
Dipartimento di Economia e Impresa, University of Tuscia, Via San Camillo De Lellis, Viterbo 01100, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Fausto Gallucci
Received: 2 September 2016 / Revised: 5 October 2016 / Accepted: 13 October 2016 / Published: 24 October 2016
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Dense self-supported Pd-alloy membranes are used to selectively separate hydrogen and hydrogen isotopes. In particular, deuterium (D) and tritium (T) are currently identified as the main elements for the sustainability of the nuclear fusion reaction aimed at carbon free power generation. In the fusion nuclear reactors, a breeding blanket produces the tritium that is extracted and purified before being sent to the plasma chamber in order to sustain the fusion reaction. In this work, the application of Pd-alloy membranes has been tested for recovering tritium from a solid breeding blanket through a helium purge stream. Several simulations have been performed in order to optimize the design of a Pd-Ag multi-tube module in terms of geometry, operating parameters, and membrane module configuration (series vs. parallel). The results demonstrate that a pre-concentration stage before the Pd-membrane unit is mandatory because of the very low tritium concentration in the He which leaves the breeding blanket of the fusion reactor. The most suitable operating conditions could be reached by: (i) increasing the hydrogen partial pressure in the lumen side and (ii) decreasing the shell pressure. The preliminary design of a membrane unit has been carried out for the case of the DEMO fusion reactor: the optimized membrane module consists of an array of 182 Pd-Ag tubes of 500 mm length, 10 mm diameter, and 0.100 mm wall thickness (total active area of 2.85 m2). View Full-Text
Keywords: hydrogen isotopes; tritium extraction system; Pd-Ag diffuser hydrogen isotopes; tritium extraction system; Pd-Ag diffuser

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Incelli, M.; Santucci, A.; Tosti, S.; Carlini, M. Design of a Multi-Tube Pd-Membrane Module for Tritium Recovery from He in DEMO. Processes 2016, 4, 40.

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