X-ray monitoring on sounding rockets (XRMON)


The XRMON facility aims on in-situ X-ray monitoring of advanced metallurgical processes on sounding rockets.

Various scientific objectives are addressed which includes investigations on metallic foam formation, measurements of metallic melt diffusion and numerous objectives related to the study of fundamentals in solidification of metals such as columnar growth, dendritic growth, morphological instabilities, metal-particle interaction, forming of casting defects etc.

The XRMON-1 facility offers an X-ray monitoring system with a resolution of about 20 µm. Currently 2 different set-ups exists with this lower resolution detector and sensor system, one metallic foam formation furnace and a diffusion couple set-up.

The foam formation furnace was flown for the first time on a MASER sounding rocket flight. The square shaped crucible can be heated to maximum 700 °C. With a field of view of 20 x 20 mm the whole sample is detected. The diffusion couple set-up will have its maiden flight in spring 2010. Three diffusion couples with 1.5 mm diameter and a length of 30 mm can be suited in one module and detected at the same time. The maximum heater temperature for this set-up will be 1100 °C.

More details can be made available on request.

The XRMON-2 facility is currently under development and will be available from the end of 2010. This facility will consist of a higher resolution X-ray diagnostic system and a Bridgman furnace for directional solidification experiments.

The furnace will suit sheet-like sample with a thickness of approximately 150-200 µm. A maximum heater temperature of about 900 °C is planned.

The X-ray system will offer a spatial resolution of the samples of 5 µm, with a temporal resolution of 2-3 Hz. The field of view in this case is much lower than for XRMON-1 (2.5 x 2.5 mm) in order to investigate the solidification phenomena in more detail.

Last update: 22 July 2010

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