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Knudsen Effusion Mass Spectrometry of Nuclear Materials: Applications and Developments

The nuclearised Knudsen Effusion Mass Spectrometry (KEMS) facility at ITU is a unique device to measure not only the partial vapor pressure and ionization efficiency curves of actinide compounds, but also the release of fission product from irradiated fuel up to very high temperatures. Those measurements provide fundamental data for nuclear fuel safety in normal and accidental conditions but as well for long term storage. The system being installed in a glove box and needing very high temperatures, requires a specific setup. Until now a 20 years old KEMS system equipped with a quadrupole mass spectrometer and joule heating coil is used. In view of the construction of a new system, a prototype of a laser heated furnace for Knudsen cell has been developed. It presents many advantages in comparison to standard heating techniques and fulfills some of our requirements. All these subjects are discussed.