Economical evaluation of radiation processing with high-intensity X-rays

  • 1 Centre of Radiation Research and Technology, Institute of Nuclear Chemistry and Technology, , Dorodna 16, 03-195, Warsaw, Poland


X-rays application for radiation processing was introduced to the industrial practice, and in some circumstances is found to be more economically competitive, and offer more flexibility than gamma sources. Recent progress in high-power accelerators development gives opportunity to construct and apply reliable high-power electron beam to X-rays converters for the industrial application. The efficiency of the conversion process depends mainly on electron energy and atomic number of the target material, as it was determined in theoretical predictions and confirmed experimentally. However, the lower price of low-energy direct accelerators and their higher electrical efficiency may also have certain influence on process economy. There are number of auxiliary parameters that can effectively change the economical results of the process. The most important ones are as follows: average beam power level, spare part cost, and optimal shape of electron beam and electron beam utilization efficiency. All these parameters and related expenses may affect the unit cost of radiation facility operation and have a significant influence on X-ray process economy. The optimization of X-rays converter construction is also important, but it does not depend on the type of accelerator. The article discusses the economy of radiation processing with high-intensity of X-rays stream emitted by conversion of electron beams accelerated in direct accelerator (electron energy 2.5 MeV) and resonant accelerators (electron energy 5 MeV and 7.5 MeV). The evaluation and comparison of the costs of alternative technical solutions were included to estimate the unit cost of X-rays facility operation for average beam power 100 kW.

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