EUV optimization project wins Hang Design Award
A team whose project aimed to reduce tin particle contamination in semi-conductor processing was named the winner of the 2019 Daniel F. Hang Outstanding Senior Design Award.
Josh Devorkin, Cody Moynihan, Kelly Munkhtuya and Phong Pham, all seniors in Nuclear, Plasma, and Radiological Engineering in The Grainger College of Engineering, worked on the project in cooperation with ASML, a leader in the extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography industry, producing systems for the world’s leading chipmakers. EUV lithography is a crucial step to make the next-generation chips, allowing the bi-annual target of doubling the number of transistors on an integrated circuit to be met.
Since the early 2000s, the switch from xenon to tin has led to a more efficient EUV production. However, it comes with the cost of depositing tin all over the chamber. In order to reduce the contamination of critical surfaces by tin particles, tin must not migrate into the scanner.
In their project, Hydrogen Plasma for Particle Elimination (HyPPE), the winning team discussed the application and prototype design of a hydrogen plasma for particle elimination to avoid the migration of tin particles through the intermediate focus.
Second Place (Honorable Mention)
The competition’s runner-up was the project, Fluidized Bed Heat Exchanging System for Molten Salt Reactor Designs, presented by Adolfo Baca, Ryan Pullara and Jacob Tellez.
Molten salt reactor designs have been around since the beginning of the nuclear energy age, and propose advantages including higher efficiencies, inherent safety, and online refueling. But the designs require heat exchangers capable of handling the harsh corrosive and thermal environments of the molten salt.
The team proposed a fluidized bed heat exchanger (FBHX) that could significantly enhance heat transfer between the molten salt and a working fluid. Theoretically, the exchanger could remove 300 megawatts thermal power. The team’s project compared two FBHX designs along with heat exchanger designs currently used in industry.
Taking Third Place in the competition was the project, Low-Cost Microreactor for Developing Energy Markets, presented by Adewale Adeyinka, Tyler Kennelly and Kelsey Luo.
The team’s goal was to design a proof of concept microreactor compatible for the purpose of serving smaller energy demands of developing energy markets, U.S. Department of Energy laboratories, the military, and microgrids. The scope of the project included choosing a spectrum, fuel, core geometry, and thermodynamic cycles able to achieve 1-5 megawatts electric of power output with a focus on passive safety elements. Economic and probabilistic risk assessments were also taken into account to analyze feasibility for commercial deployment.
The project also won the Best Undergraduate Presentation in Advanced Reactors at the American Nuclear Society Student Conference held in April at Virginia Commonwealth University.
Other senior design projects
- Tin Abatement Plasma (SnAP), by Jack Stahl, Alyssa Hayes, Nathan Kennedy and Austin Schmidt. This project was awarded Best Undergraduate Presentation in Fusion Energy & Plasma at the ANS Student Conference.
- Thermal Desalination Using Reactor Steam, by Alex Bohm, Will Brockschmidt and Maxx Villotti.
- Deep Borehole Disposal of Raffinate Waste, by Kerrick Klancnik, Heyuan Huang and Demetrio Velazco.
- Fast Inherently-Safe Hybrid Propulsion and Power Plant (FISHP3), by Louis Kissinger, Adam Pichman and Brad Ellis.
- Liquid Plutonium Reactor, by Nicole Ditmars, Chris Bitters and Mitchell Whalen.