In a second step in our upgrade, LPPFusion has placed an order for the machining of the base of our new beryllium anode. We have also received a cylinder of beryllium that will be used for the shaft of the anode, so we now have all the beryllium metal that we need for machining. The two pieces will be joined together outside the vacuum chamber, avoiding any chance of damaging arcing.
We still are on track to get the anode finished in November, although we are still working on optimizing the design for the shaft—the part that will go into the plasma.
While preparing for our new beryllium parts, we’ve tested, with an outside safety lab, the dust in our lab to check our precautions against toxic beryllium dust. We were reassured, although not surprised, to learn that the lab could not find any beryllium at all, down to the detection level of 0.15ng/cm2. The lab also found no lead in our dust. Not only is our own safety assured, but this demonstrates that even a very small lab can handle beryllium electrodes safely.
Fig 2. Our gleaming new beryllium cylinder sits safely in its plastic seal, ready to be machined into multiple anode shafts.