Technology for Polarization Measurement

Oak Ridge National Lab and Hinds Instruments Sign CRADA

September 26th, 2012

Hillsboro, Oregon, September 26, 2012 – Hinds Instruments and Oak Ridge National Lab (ORNL) announced today that work has begun on a new Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA). CRADA No. NFE-12-04041 will focus the technology resources of both partners to further develop and refine the 2-MGEM Optical Anisotropy Factor Measurement System. The 2-MGEM system was initially developed several years ago at ORNL by Dr. G.E. Jellison using Hinds Instruments’ core photoelastic modulator (PEM) technology. The 2-MGEM solved a key challenge in the characterization of TRISO (tristructural isotropic) nuclear fuel: how best to measure the optical anisotropy of the pyrocarbon layers. Hinds and ORNL partnered on an initial CRADA (ORNL00-0603) to produce a commercial version of the ORNL design.  The new CRADA continues the longstanding collaboration of ORNL and Hinds by focusing the technology partners on further system refinements that will expand the user interface, increase the 2-MGEM’s processing speed, replace obsolete third-party components and expand remote field service capability. The importance of this advanced metrology to major GEN IV nuclear reactor support programs around the world makes these design upgrades vital to making the 2-MGEM robust for technically advanced metrology.

The 2-MGEM is a microscope-based, 2-PEM Ellipsometer that is optimized to measure the linear diattenuation of pyrocarbon layers within a TRISO nuclear fuel particle. It measures optical diattenuation to an accuracy of +/- 0.001 and the preferred direction of crystallites to an accuracy of better than +/- 2° with a spatial resolution of better than 5 µm. The instrument is patented by ORNL (U.S. Patent No. 5956147) and licensed by Hinds Instruments from UT-Battelle, LLC, management and operating contractor of ORNL, under Patent License Agreement No. 972.

Hinds Instruments, Inc. is a world leader in developing and supplying polarization measurement technology for a broad range of applications. With 40+ years of polarization measurement experience, Hinds Instruments metrology solutions are proven tools for laboratory and research applications. Hinds’ family of products includes photoelastic modulators, SignalocTM lock-in amplifiers, Exicor® birefringence measurement systems and MOKE hysteresis loop tracers, Mueller matrix polarimeters and Stokes polarimeters. For more information, please contact Hinds Instruments.

Oak Ridge National Lab, ORNL is a multiprogram science and technology laboratory managed for the U.S. Department of Energy by UT-Battelle, LLC. ORNL's mission is to deliver scientific discoveries and technical breakthroughs that will accelerate the development and deployment of solutions in clean energy and global security, and in doing so create economic opportunity for the nation. For more information, please contact ORNL.

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