Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II
SCOPUS ID: 26428468300
Abstract: Factory acceptance test is the inspection of equipment and components at the supplier’s premises before delivery or final inspection. However, this control can represent a considerable cost for the customer, especially when the manufacturer’s company is geographically far from the customer one and inspections must be frequent. In this paper, the authors present a framework to support the factory acceptance test based on augmented reality (AR) techniques and model-based definition aimed at dimensional checks that does not require the physical presence of the customer at the supplier's premises. The supplier must be previously equipped with an automatic measuring machine. Once the component under inspection is placed inside the machine, this reads the type and the position of the features to be measured along with the related specification limits directly from the annotated 3D model of the component. The results are automatically transmitted to the customer’s site. Through a tablet, the supplier, guided by the customer, reads the results of the measures directly on the measured object through augmented or mixed reality techniques. Any out-of-specification dimension can be remeasured in real time with the customer’s remote assistance using traditional measurement techniques. The proposed architecture, at an advanced stage of experimentation, is discussed with reference to an industrial case study proposed and using an entry level commercial 3D scanner.
Keywords: Augmented reality | Dimensional inspection | Factory acceptance test | Metrology
Abstract: This work is focused on the development of a “serious game”, i.e., a software with no playful purpose adopted to train and verify the skills of users to improve safety in the workplace. Particular attention has been given to the accidents that occur during typical operations done in factory sites, e.g., driving forklifts. Firstly, the different types of “serious games” already available on the market have been analyzed to identify the best way to carry on tests and simulations by means of virtual, mixed, and augmented reality. Afterward, once the best solution has been identified, the Unity development environment has been considered to define a standard that could also be used for future projects. So, the result is the development of a powerful editor of the scene, in which the user can program all the components adjusting the game to the tasks to be performed by the worker, the tools, the environment and the targets. So, an upgradeable “parametric path” has been created, which will be followed by the forklift, realizing a new game and test environment for the worker. Then, modular components have been conceived to contemplate the future developments of the project, including a graphic editor: these will lead to a software that can be easily modified according to the customer’s requests.
Keywords: Occupational safety | Serious games | Virtual reality
Abstract: The Pre-Concept Design (PCD) of the Balance of Plant (BoP) systems of the EU-DEMO power plant is described in this paper for both breeding blanket (BB) concepts under assessment, namely the Water Cooled Lithium Lead (WCLL) BB and the Helium Cooled Pebble Bed (HCPB) BB. Moreover, the results of a preliminary evaluation of a number of BoP variants are discussed. This paper outlines the steps of the BoP design development, highlighting the project objectives and the strategy for their achievement under the very challenging requirements which include, among others, the intermittent nature of the DEMO plasma heat source. The main achievements during the PCD Phase will be reported together with the development plan for the Concept Design (CD) Phase to reach a mature (feasible) BoP concept for DEMO.
Keywords: Balance of plant | DEMO | HCPB BB | Power conversion system | Steam generator | WCLL BB
Abstract: DEMO will be a fusion power plant demonstrating the integration into the grid architecture of an electric utility grid. The design of the power conversion chain is of particular importance, as it must adequately account for the specifics of nuclear fusion on the generation side and ensure compatibility with the electric utility grid at all times. One of the special challenges the foreseen pulsed operation, which affects the operation of the entire heat transport chain. This requires a time-dependant analysis of different concept design approaches to ensure proof of reliable operation and efficiency to obtain nuclear licensing. Several architectures of Balance of Plant were conceived and developed during the DEMO Pre-Concept Design Phase in order to suit needs and constraints of the in-vessel systems, with particular regard to the different blanket concepts. At this early design stage, emphasis was given to the achievement of robust solutions for all essential Balance of Plant systems, which have chiefly to ensure feasible and flexible operation modes during the main DEMO operating phases – Pulse, Dwell and ramp-up/down – and to adsorb and compensate for potential fusion power fluctuations during plasma flat-top. Although some criticalities, requiring further design improvements were identified, these preliminary assessments showed that the investigated cooling system architectures have the capability to restore nominal conditions after any of the abovementioned cases and that the overall availability could meet the DEMO top-level requirements. This paper describes the results of the studies on the tokamak coolant and Power Conversion System (PCS) options and critically highlights the aspects that require further work.
Keywords: Balance of plant | DEMO | HCPB | PHTS | WCLL
Abstract: One of the most challenging objectives of the European research concerning nuclear fusion technology, promoted by the EUROfusion consortium, is to bring stellarator-type nuclear fusion devices to maturity. To this purpose, studies on a large HELIcal-axis advanced stellarator (HELIAS), extrapolated from Wendelstein 7-X and based on a 5-fold symmetry (HELIAS 5-B), are currently ongoing. The HELIAS 5-B stellarator reactor will be endowed with a breeding blanket (BB) system to allow for the self-sustainability of the nuclear fusion reaction and make it suitable for electricity generation. In this paper, we present the first ever heterogeneous mechanical design and the preliminary structural assessment of a bean-shaped ring of a HELIAS 5-B BB sector. The proposed mechanical design, which is based on the helium-cooled pebble bed (HCPB) BB concept and developed according to the “sandwich” architecture, foresees an actively cooled segment box connected to a back-supporting structure equipped with manifolds. The internal region (breeding zone) is reinforced by actively cooled steel plates. The proposed heterogeneous design was checked against nominal loads and an in-box loss of coolant accidental scenario, which is a typical design driver for BBs. The assessment has been performed according to the RCC-MRx structural design code. Our results are herewith presented and critically discussed, focusing on the potential follow-up of the HELIAS 5-B HCPB BB design.
Keywords: breeding blanket | FEM analysis | HELIAS | Stellarator | structural design | thermo-mechanics
Abstract: The realization of nuclear fusion reaction as energy source is under investigation, among the scientific community, through the design and development of tokamak reactors. Among the several experiments worldwide, the ITER project is the major international experiment and it involves several research institutes from several countries. In such a project, a Systems Engineering (SE) approach is requested to organize and manage the design due to its highly integrated design, the safety requirements related to nuclear aspects and the complex procurement scheme. The SE discipline focuses the attention on the requirements which are crucial for every successful project, defining what the stakeholders want from a potential new system, namely what the system must do to satisfy stakeholders need. Correctly stating WHAT is needed for the system, it is possible to obtain its conceptual design (HOW) as much as possible complying the requirements. The incorrect definition of requirements often leads to the failing of a project. Stakeholders’ needs are written in Natural Language that is generally ambiguous, imprecise, incomplete and redundant. Their transformation into SMART requirements is crucial to avoid design failure. However, it requires a great expertise, unless a specific procedure is assessed. To this end, this work presents a specific procedure based on “like-mind” processes to make systematic the SMART requirements definition and assessment from stakeholders needs. The procedure is based on a demand/response framework and it is developed to obtain ITER requirements. However, it can be easily extended to every project using its own specifications. A specific case study on ITER Remote Handling is presented in this paper as example of the conceived requirements transformation procedure.
Keywords: ITER tokamak | Requirements engineering | SMART requirements | Systems engineering
Abstract: An early attention to the layout of both plant site and its buildings is essential in a complex plant under preliminary design as DEMO in order to meet the assigned targets, namely i) the licensing requirements ii) a good availability in delivery electricity to the grid. The layout definition has to follow several criteria that become more complex and stringent for nuclear buildings, e.g. functional, maintenance, fire protection, safety, human factors, shielding, and remote handling. The criterion As Low As Reasonable Achievable, with respect to the dose to the staff, has to be applied in design, operation, maintenance and decommissioning phases. The tokamak building, where several complex systems have to converge to the torus to create and control the plasma, to take out its energy and to produce and extract tritium, provides the second and ultimate confinement barrier between the environment and the hazardous and radioactive materials present inside that might be mobilised, in case of accident, by the high energetic fluids stored in DEMO systems. The layout criteria are focused on avoiding any challenge to the safety functions: e.g. no common mode failures of the safety classified systems for all reference design basis events. Furthermore the safety classified equipment have to maintain their safety function all over the plant life in such challenging environmental conditions; an accurate layout might allow the qualification possible, making milder the environment, e.g. defining adequate shielding and areas where radiation dose, magnetic field and accidental environmental conditions are reasonable for sensible equipment. The experience of NPPs and ITER is also recognized as the basis of such design criteria for DEMO. The paper will outline the main design basis events and the layout criteria presenting some applications for the tokamak building that reflect the recent progress of the DEMO design.
Keywords: DEMO | Layout criteria | Safety | Tokamak building
Abstract: The European Research Roadmap to the Realisation of Fusion Energy foresees that the DEMO reactor is going to succeed ITER in the pathway towards the exploitation of nuclear fusion, achieving long plasma operation time, demonstrating tritium self-sufficiency and producing net electric output on an industrial scale. Therefore, its design must be more oriented towards the Balance of Plant (BoP) than it is in ITER. Since the early pre-conceptual phase of the DEMO project, emphasis has been laid on identifying the main requirements affecting the overall architecture of the BoP. For instance, specific efforts and proper solutions have been envisaged to cope with the pulsed nature of the heat source. Furthermore, the current development of two blanket concepts calls for two separate BoP options to be conceived. This paper summarizes the main alternatives outlined at the end of DEMO pre-conceptual design phase for the BoP concepts based on both the Helium-Cooled Pebble Bed (HCPB) and Water-Cooled Lithium Lead (WCLL) Breeding Blanket (BB) technologies. Then, the assumed reference configurations of both the BoP concepts are described in detail, highlighting the main features and the most relevant engineering aspects. Attention will be focussed on technological challenges, integration constraints and other open issues, highlighting pros and cons of the chosen BoP options to be further investigated in the next design phase.
Keywords: Balance of plant | DEMO | HCPB | WCLL
Abstract: In the frame of the activities promoted and encouraged by the EUROfusion Power Plant Physics and Technology (PPPT) department aimed at developing the EU-DEMO fusion reactor, strong emphasis has been recently addressed to the whole Balance of Plant (BoP) which represents the set of systems devoted to convert the plasma generated thermal power into electricity and to deliver it to the grid. Among these systems, the Divertor Primary Heat Transfer Systems (PHTSs) are intended to feed coolant to the two main components of the Divertor assembly, namely the Plasma Facing Components (PFCs) and the Cassette Body (CB). Since the DEMO Divertor must withstand high heat flux loads together with a considerable neutron deposited power, very tight tolerances may be allowed to the coolant inlet conditions. Therefore, the design of reliable PHTSs is of the utmost importance towards the development of an EU-DEMO fusion reactor. Within this framework, a study has been jointly carried out by University of Palermo, Ansaldo Nucleare and CREATE to design the Ex-Vessel PHTSs of both the PFCs and the CB for a DEMO reactor equipped with a Helium Cooled Pebble Bed Breeding Blanket. The paper describes criteria and rationale followed with the aim to achieve simple PHTS designs based on the adoption of easy-to-manufacture main components avoiding too much extrapolation from the state-of-art technology. Results of preliminary thermal-hydraulic calculations carried out to size heat exchangers, pressurizers, piping and pumps are presented and critically discussed, with particular attention to those integration, safety and feasibility constraints that may deeply affect the design of such components. Finally, the evaluation of PHTS key parameters as total pumping power and coolant inventory is reported.
Keywords: Balance of plant | DEMO | Divertor | PHTS
Abstract: The Water Cooled Lithium Lead Test Blanket System (WCLL TBS) is one of the EU Test Blanket Systems candidate for being installed and operated in ITER. In view of its Conceptual Design Review by F4E and ITER Organization (IO), planned for mid-September 2020, several technical activities have been performed in the areas of WCLL TBS Ancillary Systems design. In this article the outcomes of the conceptual design phase of the four main Ancillary Systems of WCLL TBS, namely the Water Cooling System (WCS), the Coolant Purification System (CPS), the PbLi loop and the Tritium Extraction System (TES), are reported and critically discussed. In particular, for each Ancillary System hereafter are reported: i) a short design description, including the conceptual design of their main components together with their operative conditions under the so-called Normal Operational State (NOS), ii) the ESP-ESPN classification for their main components, and iii) their arrangement and integration in the assigned ITER areas (PC#16, Vertical Shaft, TCWS Vault, Galleries and Tritium Process Room).
Keywords: CPS | ITER | PbLi loop | TES | WCLL TBS | WCS
Abstract: Collaborative robotics, or Human-Robot Collaboration (HRC), is a challenging topic characterized by multidisciplinary approaches. Many researchers are facing this innovative manufacturing system studying several aspects such as task allocation, facility layout problem and timing. Above all, one of the most important issues in collaborative robotics is the wellbeing of the operator collaborating with the robot system during the different phases of the process. The added value of a collaborative workplace respect to the manual and automatic workplaces is strictly correlated to a safe and ergonomic interaction between the operator and the robot. Indeed, the combination of robot and operator skills lead to a higher level of accuracy and flexibility. Thus, assessing operator's working conditions requires the acquisition, eventually in real time, of relevant parameters such as posture, movements, and interactive tasks. This may require the adoption of existing metrics proposed by standard evaluation guidelines, as well as the introduction of new or modified prescription to consider the presence of the robot. The ergonomics analysis in collaborative robotics is evaluated by considering both physical and cognitive aspects of the operator during the interaction with the robot. The research work aims to carry out a scientific bibliometric literature review (BLR) about the ergonomics analysis of collaborative workplaces, and to identify methods and tools for the physical and cognitive ergonomics assessment that can be adopted in collaborative robotics. The search has been accomplished using the Scopus database by means of a set of key words specifically defined to investigate the ergonomics in the collaborative robotics. The review provides a sharp classification, a critical analysis of the most relevant contributions in this field so that emerging trends for future development can be defined and discussed.
Keywords: Bibliometric literature review (blr) | Cognitive ergonomics | Human-robot interaction (hri) | Humanrobot collaboration (hrc) | Physical ergonomics
Abstract: The present work has two main objectives: the realization of a Virtual Training system about assembly operations in two immersive virtual environments and the comparison between the features offered. The first solution proposed is the use of commercial software IC.IDO, produced by ESI Group. It is designed for applications throughout all the PLM, offering support both in the design and production phases, as well as after-sales assistance. At the opposition, the second solution proposed is the use of the Open-source software Unity. This graphics engine has found significant success in gaming field in the recent years, as it allows more flexibility to the developer for the implementation of the features but requires greater competence in terms of programming. The following paragraphs firstly address the path outlined from the collection of customer’s requirements to the virtual prototypes’ release, following the Systems Engineering approach. Secondly, a benchmark between IC.IDO and Unity’s features is illustrated to point out their main differences, strengths and weaknesses.
Abstract: The European DEMOnstration power plant (DEMO) is considered to be the nearest-term fusion reactor capable of producing several hundred MWs of net electricity, operating with a closed tritium fuel-cycle (achieving the tritium self-sufficiency), and qualifing technological solutions for a fusion power plant with different breeding blanket (BB) concepts that are under investigation. The BB is a key component for the development of the DEMO plant design and, in particular, of those systems having the responsibility to remove the plasma-generated thermal power and its conversion in the electrical energy. This study deals with the preliminary thermo-mechanical design of the heat exchangers and steam generator components. The design criteria and the main design analyses were discussed to achieve a simple but robust design. The proposed preliminary thermo-mechanical designs, both for heat exchangers and for steam generators, are considered feasible.
Keywords: Balance of plant (BoP) | DEMOnstration power plant (DEMO) | heat exchanger | steam generator | tube sheet
Abstract: This paper presents an innovative safety training method based on digital ergonomics simulations and serious games, which are games that focus on education. Digital ergonomics is intended to disseminate the culture of safety among workers, while serious games are used to train the operators on specific safety procedures and verify their skills. The results of the experimentation in a real industrial environment showed that, compared to the traditional training methodology, multimedia contents and quantitative ergonomic analyses improve the level of attention and the awareness of the workers about their own safety. However, serious games turned out to be promising training tools with regard to standard operating procedures that are usually difficult or dangerous to simulate in a real working scenario without stopping production. Practitioner summary: Digital ergonomics and serious games are used to disseminate the culture of safety among the workers and for safety training. Our results show that the proposed methodology improves the level of attention and provides a better feedback about the actual skills of the workers than the standard educational strategies. Abbreviations:.
Keywords: Digital humans | occupational safety | serious games | training methods
Abstract: Most occupational safety regulations and international standards recognize the importance of keeping a corporate document that set all the safety procedures prescribed for a certain workplace. However, experience show that, to be truly effective, any piece of information must be kept updated and correctly delivered to the right recipient. From this point of view, the possibility, given by modern technology, to receive, process and send information in real time using common smartphones is a great opportunity. The authors developed a solution for mobile devices, which is based on augmented reality technologies and indoor positioning algorithms, aimed at speeding up and simplifying the information flow among safety managers, workers and casual users about safety-related content. Safety managers can use it as a support tool for the preparation of the risk assessment documentation, on the workers' side, the same application acts as an informational tool providing safety-related content when and where needed through augmented reality technologies. Preliminary results from in situ testing show that augmented reality may be a powerful tool to improve the occupational safety.
Keywords: Augmented reality | Mobile technologies | Workplace safety
Abstract: Most occupational safety regulations and international standards recognize the importance of keeping a corporate document that set all the safety procedures prescribed for a certain workplace. However, experience show that, to be truly effective, any piece of information must be kept updated and correctly delivered to the right recipient. From this point of view, the possibility, given by modern technology, to receive, process and send information in real time using common smartphones is a great opportunity. The authors developed a solution for mobile devices, which is based on augmented reality technologies and indoor positioning algorithms, aimed at speeding up and simplifying the information flow among safety managers, workers and casual users about safety-related content. Safety managers can use it as a support tool for the preparation of the risk assessment documentation, on the workers’ side, the same application acts as an informational tool providing safety-related content when and where needed through augmented reality technologies. Preliminary results from in situ testing show that augmented reality may be a powerful tool to improve the occupational safety.
Keywords: Augmented reality | Mobile technologies | Workplace safety
Abstract: This research discusses the use of a systematic design method, the Iterative and Participative Axiomatic Design Process (IPADeP), for the early conceptual design stage of large-scale engineering systems. The involvement of multiple and competing requirements has imposed high challenges for achieving an affordable design of complex systems in a reasonable lead time. Systems Engineering (SE) focuses on how to design and manage complex systems over their life cycles. Both must begin by discovering the real problems that need to be resolved and identifying from the early stage of the design the main stakeholder requirements and customer needs. The Axiomatic Design (AD) methodology is widely recognized in the literature to efficiently support the design of complex systems from the early conceptual stage. IPADeP provides a systematic methodology for applying AD theory in the conceptual design of large-scale engineering systems, aiming to minimize the risks related to the uncertainty and incompleteness of requirements and to improve the collaboration of multi-disciplinary design teams. IPADeP has been adopted as design methodology in the pre-conceptual design stage of a subsystem of the DEMOnstration fusion power plant (DEMO): the divertor cassette body-to-vacuum vessel locking system. In this paper improvements in IPADeP are presented and its validity is discussed by presenting the application to the divertor system design.
Keywords: Axiomatic Design | Design methods | Systems Engineering | Tokamak design
Abstract: Unfortunately, the affiliation of one of the authors “Salvatore Gerbino” was incorrect in the original publication, and the correct version is updated here.
Abstract: This paper presents an interactive design method aimed at improving workplace health and safety. Human performances and anthropometric variability are carefully considered to make the workplace “robust” from a safety point of view. This topic is of increasing interest to industries that plan to make safer workplaces without renouncing to their productivity targets. A challenging issue concerns the evaluation of the effects of sources of anthropometric variability in the process by using just a small sample of real or digital humans. The adoption of a discretization technique helps to solve this problem and saving time and resources. Through real industrial case studies, the authors investigate the main ergonomic and safety issues faced during the development of both manual and human–robot hybrid workcells.
Keywords: Design methods | Digital human modelling | Human–robot interaction | Robust design | Virtual ergonomics | Virtual safety
Abstract: In this work we present the latest progresses (September 2018) in the conceptual design of the main containment structures of DTT fusion reactor. The previous DTT baseline design is revised in terms of structural materials and overall reactor shape. The major change involves the vacuum vessel, which now foresees a welded double-wall stainless steel structure. The basic design includes eighteen sectors, with novel ports configuration for remote maintenance systems, diagnostics and heating equipment. New supports are designed for the first wall, which is conveniently segmented in view of assembly and remote replacement. The cryostat of the machine is conceived as a single-wall cylindrical vessel reinforced by ribs. The cryostat base is also in charge of supporting the vacuum vessel and the magnets system. A preliminary FEA analysis confirms that the main mechanical structure might withstand the design loads, in particular the ones resulting from possible plasma disruptions.
Keywords: CAD | DTT | EU-DEMO | FEM | Fusion reactor | Structural analysis
Abstract: In the frame of the activities promoted and encouraged by the EURO-fusion Power Plant Physics and Technology (PPPT) department aimed at developing the EU-DEMO fusion reactor, strong emphasis has been recently posed to the whole Balance of Plant (BoP) which represents the set of systems devoted to convert the plasma generated thermal power into electricity and to deliver it to the grid. Among these systems, a very important role is played by the Breeding Blanket (BB) Primary Heat Transfer System (PHTS) as it is responsible to extract more than 80% of the fusion plasma power. In this framework, University of Palermo, Ansaldo Nucleare and CREATE have focused their work to improve thermal-hydraulic, safety and integration features of the Ex-Vessel PHTS for the Helium-Cooled Pebble Bed (HCPB) BB concept of DEMO. Starting from the outcomes obtained in 2016 that have allowed to highlight some criticalities which needed design changes, the paper describes progress and developments of the 2017 HCPB PHTS as well as the goals which have been achieved. The results of the research activity carried out show, in fact, i) an increase of the thermal-hydraulic performances, since a reduction in both total coolant inventory and total pressure drop has been respectively reached, ii) a potential improvement of the overall safety characteristics of the system. Nevertheless a critical assessment of these key parameters reveals that some issues are still open in terms of design integration and feasibility of the whole DEMO BoP for the helium-cooled blanket option, indicating that additional efforts are required to make this technology more attractive.
Keywords: Balance of plant | DEMO | HCPB | PHTS
Abstract: This paper focuses on the 3D CAD implementation of the pipework and the main equipment of the Primary Heat Transfer System of EU-DEMO fusion power plant. In particular, the systems related to the Helium-Cooled Pebble Bed Breeding Blanket option are considered here. During the pulse operation, the breeding blanket modules will be the main thermal power source; Divertor and the Vacuum Vessel will contribute in the definition of the total reactor power. All the In-Vessel generated power is rejected to the Power Conversion System through a molten salt Intermediate Heat Transport System. The latter is equipped with an Energy Storage System to allow for continuous operation also during the dwell time. The layout of the pipework considered the major design constraints, such as the reinforced concrete structures and the dimensions of the main pieces of equipment. The size of the pipes was selected based on operating pressure, temperature and allowable velocity. Results provide a first estimation of length and weight of the piping systems as well as their space occupancy. These data are useful to evaluate the coolant inventory, as well as the expected pressure drops and plant cost.
Keywords: EU-DEMO | Helium-Cooled Pebble Bed Breeding Blanket | ITER | Piping design | Primary heat transfer system
Abstract: The water-cooled lithium-lead breeding blanket is in the pre-conceptual design phase. It is a candidate option for European DEMO nuclear fusion reactor. This breeding blanket concept relies on the liquid lithium-lead as breeder-multiplier, pressurized water as coolant and EUROFER as structural material. Current design is based on DEMO 2017 specifications. Two separate water systems are in charge of cooling the first wall and the breeding zone: thermo-dynamic cycle is 295–328 °C at 15.5 MPa. The breeder enters and exits from the breeding zone at 330 °C. Cornerstones of the design are the single module segment approach and the water manifold between the breeding blanket box and the back supporting structure. This plate with a thickness of 100 mm supports the breeding blanket and is attached to the vacuum vessel. It is in charge to withstand the loads due to normal operation and selected postulated initiating events. Rationale and progresses of the design are presented and substantiated by engineering evaluations and analyses. Water and lithium lead manifolds are designed and integrated with the two consistent primary heat transport systems, based on a reliable pressurized water reactor operating experience, and six lithium lead systems. Open issues, areas of research and development needs are finally pointed out.
Keywords: Breeding blanket | DEMO | EUROfusion | WCLL
Abstract: This work focuses on an innovative training methodology based on the use of Virtual ergonomics and “serious games” in the field of occupational safety. Virtual Ergonomics was chosen as an effective and convincing tool for disseminating the culture of safety among the workers, while a “serious game” was developed to train operators on specific safety procedures and to verify their skills. The results of the experimentation in a real industrial case study showed that, compared to the traditional training methodology, multimedia contents and quantitative ergonomic analyses improve the level of attention and the awareness of the operators about their safety. On the other hand, Serious games turned out as promising tools to train the workers about safe operating procedures that are difficult to implement in a real working environment.
Keywords: Ergonomics | Occupational safety | Serious game | Virtual humans | Virtual reality
Abstract: The computerization of manufacturing is one of the major challenges of the so-called fourth industrial revolution or Industry 4.0. Virtualization of the smart factory should provide real-time vision, control and monitoring of production through interactive dashboards and synchronization of data coming from different factory functions. The latter characteristics are particularly difficult to implement when the manufacturing core relies on traditional manual labour rather than on automation, as in the case of manual assembly. Monitoring or even controlling the manual work in real-time is extremely difficult to put into practice. Therefore, realizing the principles of Industry 4.0 in manual or semi-automatic labour contexts means developing new production control systems that involve the worker in the monitoring process without negatively affecting the production times or the psychological status of the workers. In particular, the authors propose a computer-aided production control framework based upon multimedia manuals and smart completeness control systems that can be used to implement the principles of Industry 4.0 in manual or semi-automatic work environments. This technology has been successfully tested in laboratory on the basis of a real industrial case study. The response of the testers has been positive and the outcomes in terms of increased product quality are promising.
Keywords: Cyber-physical systems | Industry 4.0 | Interactive electronic technical manuals | Production monitoring | Smart manufacturing
Abstract: In Europe (EU), in the frame of the EUROfusion consortium activities, four Breeding Blanket (BB) concepts are being developed with the aim of fulfilling the performances required by a near-term fusion power demonstration plant (DEMO) in terms of tritium self-sufficiency and electricity production. The four blanket options cover a wide range of technological possibilities, as water and helium are considered as possible coolants and solid ceramic breeder in combination with beryllium and PbLi as tritium breeder and neutron multipliers. The strategy for the BB selection and operation has to account for the challenging schedule of the EU DEMO, the ambitious operational requirements of the BBs and the still large development needed to have a BB qualified and licensed for operating in DEMO. In parallel to the continuous design efforts on the four blanket concepts, their integration in-vessel and ex-vessel has started. On the one hand it has become clear that despite the numerous systems to be integrated in-vessel the protection of the blanket first wall has to be addressed with highest priority. On the other hand the ex-vessel interfaces and the requirements imposed by the blanket to the primary heat transfer system and to the PbLi loop components have a considerable impact on the whole DEMO Plant layout. The aim of this paper is: to present the strategy for the DEMO BB down selection and BB operation in DEMO; to describe the status of the design evolution of the four EU BB concepts; to provide an overview of the challenges of the in-vessel and ex-vessel integration of the main systems interfacing the BBs and describe their design status.
Keywords: Balance of plant | Breeding Blanket | In-vessel and ex-vessel components
Abstract: The Water-Cooled Lithium Lead breeding blanket is a candidate option for the realization of European DEMO power plant. One of the main functions of the breeding blanket is to recover the thermal power from the first wall and the breeding zone and to drive it to the Primary Heat Transfer System. Moreover, due to the DEMO pulsed operation, an Energy Storage System is foreseen in order to ensure thermal energy availability and reduce cycling loading during dwell time. The blanket design must interface with the Primary Heat Transfer System and the Intermediate Heat Transfer System in an integrated solution with the aim of delivering feasible power plant, with high conversion efficiency. A thermal-hydraulic model of the main components of the water cooled Primary Heat Transfer System is developed, using RELAP5 system code, to support the design and sizing. A RELAP5/Mod3.3 extended version has been set-up to implement PbLi and molten salt (HITEC) fluid proprieties, as well as the relevant heat transfer correlations. The results of the preliminary applications provide a comprehensive set of thermo-hydraulic parameters (i.e. coolant inventory, pressure drops), relevant for the assessment of the design integration.
Keywords: Breeding blanket | DEMO | PHTS | WCLL
Abstract: The water-cooled lithium-lead (PbLi) breeding blanket is one of the candidate systems considered for the implementation in the European Demonstration Power Plant (DEMO) nuclear fusion reactor. This concept employs PbLi liquid metal as tritium breeder and neutron multiplier, water pressurized at 15.5 MPa as the coolant, and EUROFER as the structural material. The current design is based on the single module segment approach and follows the requirements of the DEMO-2015 baseline design. The module is constituted by a basic toroidal-radial cell that is recursively repeated along the poloidal direction where the liquid metal flows along a radial-poloidal path. The heat generated by the fusion reactions is extracted by means of separate cooling systems for the breeding zone and the first wall. A back supporting structure is dedicated to withstand loads of the module during normal and off-normal operations. Water and PbLi manifolds are integrated with primary heat transport and tritium extraction systems. The status of the conceptual design is presented, critically discussing its rationale and main features as supported by neutronic, thermal-hydraulic, magneto-hydrodynamic, and thermo-mechanic analyses. Recent results are outlined, pointing out open issues and development needs.
Keywords: Breeding blanket (BB) | Demonstration Power Plant (DEMO) | fusion reactor design | liquid metal technology
Keywords: Augmented reality | Risk assessment | Usability
Abstract: The water-cooled lithium–lead breeding blanket is a candidate option for the European Demonstration Power Plant (DEMO) nuclear fusion reactor. This breeding blanket concept relies on the liquid lithium–lead as breeder–multiplier, pressurized water as coolant, and EUROFER as structural material. The current design is based on DEMO 2015 specifications and represents the follow-up of the design developed in 2015. The single-module-segment approach is employed. This is constituted by a basic geometry repeated along the poloidal direction. The power is removed by means of radial–toroidal (i.e., horizontal) water cooling tubes in the breeding zone. The lithium–lead flows in a radial–poloidal direction. On the back of the segment, a 100-mm-thick plate is in charge of withstanding the loads due to normal operation and selected postulated initiating events. Water and lithium–lead manifolds are designed and integrated with a consistent primary heat transport system, based on a reliable pressurized water reactor operating experience, and the lithium–lead system. Rationale and features of the single-module-segment water-cooled lithium–lead breeding blanket design are discussed and supported by thermo-mechanic, thermo-hydraulic, and neutronic analyses. Preliminary integration with the primary heat transfer system, the energy storage system, and the balance of plant is briefly discussed. Open issues, areas of research, and development needs are finally pointed out. @EUROfusion Consortium*, 2017. *For more details see http://www.euro-fusionscipub.org/disclaimer-copyright.
Keywords: breeding blanket | DEMO | WCLL
Abstract: This paper describes the activity addressed to the conceptual design of the first wall and the main containment structures of DTT device. The work moved from the geometrical constraints imposed by the desired plasma shape and the configuration needed for the magnetic coils. Many other design constraints have been taken into account such as remote maintainability, space reservations for diagnostic and heating equipment, etc. The basic vessel design resulted in an all-welded single-wall toroidal structure made of 18 sectors. Proper supports have been designed for the first wall, which was conveniently segmented in view of remote maintenance. This provisional model allowed evaluating the electromagnetic loads on the metallic structure of the vacuum vessel resulting from the current quench due to a plasma disruption. After a FEA mechanical assessment, which was conducted according to ASME code, INCONEL® 625 has been provisionally selected as reference material for vacuum vessel. The design principles of the cryostat were chiefly based on cost minimization and functionality; thus it was conceived as a single-wall cylindrical vessel supported by a steel frame structure. The same structure will hold the vacuum vessel and the magnets.
Keywords: 3D CAD modeling | Conceptual design | Cryostat | FEM | First wall | Mechanical analysis | Vacuum vessel
Abstract: Water-cooled lithium-lead breeding blanket is considered a candidate option for European DEMO nuclear fusion reactor. ENEA and the linked third parties have proposed and are developing a multi-module blanket segment concept based on DEMO 2015 specifications. The layout of the module is based on horizontal (i.e. radial-toroidal) water-cooling tubes in the breeding zone, and on lithium lead flowing in radial-poloidal direction. This design choice is driven by the rationale to have a modular design, where a basic geometry is repeated along the poloidal direction. The modules are connected with a back supporting structure, designed to withstand thermal and mechanical loads due to normal operation and selected postulated accidents. Water and lithium lead manifolds are designed and integrated with a consistent primary heat transport system, based on a reliable pressurized water reactor operating experience, and the lithium lead system. Rationale and features of current status of water-cooled lithium-lead breeding blanket design are discussed and supported by thermo-mechanics, thermo-hydraulics and neutronics analyses. Open issues and areas of research and development needs are finally pointed out.
Keywords: Breeding blanket | DEMO | WCLL
Abstract: As indicated in the European Fusion Roadmap, the main objective of the Divertor Tokamak Test facility (DTT) is to explore alternative power exhaust solutions for DEMO so as to mitigate the risk that the conventional divertor based on detached conditions to be tested on the ITER device cannot be extrapolated to a fusion reactor. The issues to be investigated by DTT include: • demonstrate a heat exhaust system capable of withstanding the large load of DEMO in case of inadequate radiated power fraction;• close the gaps in the exhaust area that cannot be addressed by present devices;• demonstrate that the possible (alternative or complementary) solutions (e.g., advanced divertor configurations or liquid metals) can be integrated in a DEMO device. In this paper, we describe a proposal for such a DTT, presented by ENEA in collaboration with a European team of scientists. The selection of the DTT parameters (a major radius of 2.15 m, an aspect ratio of about 3, an elongation of 1.6-1.8, a toroidal field of 6 T, and a flat top of about 100 s) has been made according to the following specifications: • edge conditions as close as possible to DEMO in terms of dimensionless parameters;• flexibility to test a wide set of divertor concepts and techniques;• compatibility with bulk plasma performance.• an upper bound of 500 M€ for the investment costs. This paper illustrates this DTT proposal showing how the basic machine parameters and concept have been selected so as to make a significant step toward the accomplishment of the power exhaust mission.
Keywords: Design | Divertor | Tokamak devices
Abstract: The main goal of the Divertor Tokamak Test facility (DTT) is to explore alternative power exhaust solutions for DEMO. The principal objective is to mitigate the risk of a difficult extrapolation to fusion reactor of the conventional divertor based on detached conditions under test on ITER. The task includes several issues, as: (i) demonstrating a heat exhaust system capable of withstanding the large load of DEMO in case of inadequate radiated power fraction; (ii) closing the gaps in the exhaust area that cannot be addressed by present devices; (iii) demonstrating how the possible implemented solutions (e.g., advanced divertor configurations or liquid metals) can be integrated in a DEMO device. In view of these goals, the basic physical DTT parameters have been selected according to the following guidelines: (i) edge conditions as close as possible to DEMO in terms of dimensionless parameters; (ii) flexibility to test a wide set of divertor concepts and techniques; (iii) compatibility with bulk plasma performance; (iv) an upper bound of 500 M€ for the investment costs.
Abstract: Nowadays digital substitutes of human beings (digital humans), capable of interacting with digital mock-ups in Virtual Reality, are widely used in many fields of engineering (e.g. ergonomics, product design, maintenance, and training). Nevertheless, the animation process of digital humans is still a time-consuming task, and its accuracy and reliability strongly depend on the experience and the skills of the operator. This paper presents an innovative algorithm capable of significantly speeding up the animation process of digital humans, allowing the operator to focus only on the so-called "task-related control points". This approach allows also to easily conduct biomechanical analyses. The algorithm has been tested with reference to several application scenarios in Virtual Reality.
Keywords: Algorithm | Digital humans | Kinematics | Virtual reality
Abstract: This work explores the use of an industry-oriented digital human modelling tool for the estimation of the musculoskeletal loads corresponding to a simulated human activity. The error in using a static analysis tool for measuring articulations loads under not-static conditions is assessed with reference to an accurate dynamic model and data from real experiments. Results show that, for slow movements, static analysis tools provide good approximation of the actual loads affecting human musculoskeletal system during walking.
Keywords: Biomechanics | Dynamics | Gait analysis | Kinematics | Virtual simulation
Abstract: In parallel with the programme to optimize the operation with a conventional divertor based on detached conditions to be tested on the ITER device, a project has been launched to investigate alternative power exhaust solutions for DEMO, aimed at the definition and the design of a divertor tokamak test facility (DTT). The DTT project proposal refers to a set of parameters selected so as to have edge conditions as close as possible to DEMO, while remaining compatible with DEMO bulk plasma performance in terms of dimensionless parameters and given constraints. The paper illustrates the DTT project proposal, referring to a 6 MA plasma with a major radius of 2.15 m, an aspect ratio of about 3, an elongation of 1.6-1.8, and a toroidal field of 6 T. This selection will guarantee sufficient flexibility to test a wide set of divertor concepts and techniques to cope with large heat loads, including conventional tungsten divertors; liquid metal divertors; both conventional and advanced magnetic configurations (including single null, snow flake, quasi snow flake, X divertor, double null); internal coils for strike point sweeping and control of the width of the scrape-off layer in the divertor region; and radiation control. The Poloidal Field system is planned to provide a total flux swing of more than 35 Vs, compatible with a pulse length of more than 100 s. This is compatible with the mission of studying the power exhaust problem and is obtained using superconducting coils. Particular attention is dedicated to diagnostics and control issues, especially those relevant for plasma control in the divertor region, designed to be as compatible as possible with a DEMO-like environment. The construction is expected to last about seven years, and the selection of an Italian site would be compatible with a budget of 500 M.
Keywords: divertor | plasma facing components | tokamak
Abstract: This paper focuses on a preliminary structural analysis of the current concept design of DEMO vacuum vessel (VV). The VV structure is checked against a vertical load due to a Vertical Displacement Event in combination with the weight force of all components that the main vessel shall bear. Different configurations for the supports are considered. Results show that the greatest safety margins are reached when the tokamak is supported through the lower ports rather than the equatorial ports, though all analyzed configurations are compliant with RCC-MRx design rules.
Keywords: DEMO vacuum vessel | Elastoplastic analysis | Finite element method (FEM)
Abstract: This paper describes the development of a master model concept of the DEMO vacuum vessel (VV) conducted within the framework of the EUROfusion Consortium. Starting from the VV space envelope defined in the DEMO baseline design 2014, the layout of the VV structure was preliminarily defined according to the design criteria provided in RCC-MRx. A surface modelling technique was adopted and efficiently linked to the finite element (FE) code to simplify future FE analyses. In view of possible changes to shape and structure during the conceptual design activities, a parametric design approach allows incorporating modifications to the model efficiently.
Keywords: CAD-FEA associativity | Conceptual design | DEMO vacuum vessel | Surface modelling
Abstract: This paper investigates the thermal and fluid dynamic effects of a cold air jet generated by a Ranque-Hilsch vortex tube on the cutting tool of a milling machine. A simulation model that predicts the temperature field and the displacements of the tool due to the thermal effects was developed. Such a model can help to correct machining errors and improve cutting accuracy of air-cooled milling machines. Experimental results validated the model. Eventually, the post-processing of the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) data has been conducted in virtual reality.
Keywords: CFD analysis | Dry machining | Flux simulation | FSI method | Heat transfer | Machine tool | Ranque-Hilsch vortex tube | Thermo-energetic investigation | Tool | Virtual reality post-processing
Abstract: This paper describes a new motion analysis protocol for race-walking. The protocol has been tested under laboratory conditions on a real athlete of the Italian national race-walking team. The experimental setup included a motion capture system and a force platform to record both kinematic and dynamic aspects of the athletic action. Thus, any infringement of the rules can be detected, based on the measure of knee flexion-extension and the loss of ground contact. The biomechanical efficiency can be determined from the joint angles and the temporal components of gait. The results of experiments show that the protocol can be a valuable tool to assist athletes and trainers in improving race-walking technique.
Keywords: Biomechanics | Dynamics | Experimental protocol | Gait Analysis | Kinematics | Motion Capturing | Race-walking
Abstract: In view of the ITER conceptual design review, the design of the ancillary systems of the European test blanket systems presented in  has been updated and made consistent with the ITER requirements for the present design phase. Europe is developing two concepts of TBM, the helium cooled lithium lead (HCLL) and the helium cooled pebble bed (HCPB) one, having in common the cooling media, pressurized helium at 8 MPa . TBS, namely helium cooling system (HCS), coolant purification system (CPS), lead lithium loop and tritium extraction/removal system (TES-TRS) have the purpose to cool down the TBM and to remove tritium to be driven to TEP from breeder and coolant. These systems are placed in port cell 16 (PC#16), chemical and volume control system (CVCS) area and tritium building. Starting from the pre-conceptual design developed in the past, more mature technical interfaces with the ITER facility have been consolidated and iterative design activities were performed to comply with design requirements/specifications requested by IO to conclude the conceptual design phase. In this paper the present status of design of the TBS is presented together with the preliminary integration in ITER areas.
Keywords: Breeding blanket | Integration in ITER | Tritium extraction and management
Abstract: This paper explores a possible integration of some ancillary systems of helium-cooled lithium lead (HCLL) and helium-cooled pebble-bed (HCPB) test blanket modules in ITER CVCS area. Computer-aided design and ergonomics simulation tools have been fundamental not only to define suitable routes for pipes, but also to quickly check for maintainability of equipment and in-line components. In particular, accessibility of equipment and systems has been investigated from the very first stages of the design using digital human models. In some cases, the digital simulations have resulted in changes in the initial space reservations.
Keywords: CAD | Design for maintainability | Digital human modeling | Piping layout design
Abstract: This paper focuses on a structured methodology that uses virtual reality (VR) and digital human modeling (DHM) to study maintenance procedures of industrial products. VR technologies help to highlight the most critical aspects of maintenance operations, while DHM tools allow detailing working sequences. Data coming from these analyses are then used to draw up a multimedia maintenance manual based on digital video animations, audio comments, explanatory images and written recommendations. Information is available to maintenance personnel directly on the working site through portable electronic devices. Further, web-based multimedia manuals can be updated on-line and help to shorten learning time and maintenance downtimes. © 2013 Springer-Verlag France.
Keywords: Design for maintainability | Digital human modelling | Multimedia maintenance manuals | Virtual design review
Abstract: The aim of the paper is to address an innovative methodology for assessing the usability of a product. This methodology is particularly suitable for designing products that provide their main functions through their control interfaces. In particular, this case study relates to the usability assessment of two control devices for a wheelchair-mounted robot manipulator to assist physically disabled people. The study focuses on defining a synthetic usability index on the basis of two currently used methods: the multi criteria decision analysis and the Saaty's analytic hierarchy process. Several virtual reality (VR)-based experiments have been conducted, set up in accordance with a cross-array experimental plan, that adequately caters for both control and noise factors. Quantitative measures and subjective user evaluations have been collected to maximize the effectiveness, the efficiency and the satisfaction perceived by users while using the product. Compared to the literature on the subject, the proposed approach provides both more flexibility in defining quantitative indexes and more adequate results, even when involving only a small sample of users in the participatory design session. The use of VR technologies for the collection of the experimental data has been essential in terms of safety, costs and repeatability of the tests, as well as of the robustness with respect to noise factors. © 2012 Springer-Verlag London Limited.
Keywords: Analytic hierarchy process (AHP) | Assistive robotics | Participatory design | Usability index | Virtual reality experiments
Abstract: An algorithm for both human-like motion generation and joint torques computation for digital humans is addressed in this paper. This goal has been achieved using techniques derived from robotics. In particular, the so-called augmented Jacobian has been used to solve the inverse kinematics problem with a single closed loop inverse kinematics algorithm. Furthermore, a position control for the center of mass of the kinematic chain, and for its projection on the support plane (center of pressure), has been implemented to achieve easy posture control. Thus, the inverse kinematics can be solved taking into account the static balance of the digital human. Moreover, the proposed algorithm allows simulating quite complex tasks, which involve the motion of the whole body, by means of only few task-related control points arbitrary located on the whole kinematic chain. The resulting movements are quite natural even for complex tasks as can be seen on the simulation experiments reported which show the effectiveness of the proposed approach. Finally, the joint torques can be computed thanks to the kinetostatics duality: the results are in accordance with biomechanical analyses. © 2011 Springer-Verlag.
Keywords: Digital humans | Human-like motion generation | Kinetostatic duality | Low-back biomechanical analysis | Multiple-point kinematic control | Posture control
Abstract: This work concerns the usability assessment of two control devices for a wheelchair-mounted robot manipulator aimed at assisting physical disabled people. The assessment of the usability is a crucial issue for the design of such products, since they communicate with their users not only through their shape, but especially through their control interfaces. In a first phase, the study focuses on defining a synthetic usability index on the basis of the methodologies currently in use. In a second phase, some experiments in Virtual Reality (VR) have been carried out. The use of VR technologies for the collection of the experimental data has been fundamental in terms of safety, costs and repeatability of the tests. Another important result has been the reduction of the sources of noise, thanks to preliminary simulations in VR and non-invasive questionnaires and interviews for capturing the subjective perceptions of users. Finally, it is worth noticing that the developed model may show its validity also in evaluating the usability of other products. Indeed, it provides a basis for a more extensive use of VR experiments for evaluating different design solutions in terms of global usability requirements. © Organizing Committee of TMCE 2010 Symposium.
Keywords: Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) | Assistive robotics | Participatory design | Usability index | Virtual reality experiments
Abstract: The present paper deals with the manufacturing process of a railway carriage. In the first part of the paper, the authors focus on a "virtual railway factory" that uses a very innovative assembly cycle, if compared to the traditional manufacturing processes in the railway field. The case study refers to a railway carriage consisting of four modules, that are singularly set up of furnishings and other systems in dedicated workplaces. On one hand, the virtual simulation has highlighted several critical aspects to be improved, in order to achieve a greater feasibility and to reduce time and cost. On the other hand, the designers have been able to evaluate the movements of the parts and the assembly sequences of the components, by considering each geometric, functional and technological constraint and also some safety requirements. The second part of the paper deals with the simulation of the assembling operations and the analysis of tolerance chains, which have been performed through a Computer Aided Tolerancing system. In particular, the precision requirements have been also evaluated and we have compared the accumulation of dimensional and geometric deviations when using both rivets and traditional welds to fasten the modules. © 2009 Springer-Verlag.
Keywords: Computer Aided Tolerancing | Train design | Virtual manufacturing
Abstract: The design of solutions for robotic extenders of wheelchairs must take into account both objective and subjective metrics for everyday activities in human environments. Virtual Reality (VR) constitutes a useful tool to effectively test design ideas and to verify performance criteria. This paper presents the development of a simulation environment, where three different manipulators to be mounted on a commercially available wheelchair have been considered. Experimental results are discussed in a significant case study, based upon users' feedback. © The Eurographics Association 2008.
Keywords: Human robot interaction | Kinematics | Rehabilitation robotics | Virtual Reality
Abstract: In this paper, we describe a framework which helps designers visualize and verify the results of robotic work cell simulation in a Virtual Environment (VE). The system aims at significantly reducing production costs and error sources during manufacturing processes. The means to achieve these goals are the development of a prototypical VE for the support of robots planning tasks, reuse of animation events, and the implementation of customization tools for animation elements and their behavior. By using advanced Virtual Reality (VR) techniques, the system is also able to direct the focus of the observer to interesting events, objects and time-frames during robotic simulations in order to highlight the Human Robot Interaction within the manufacturing systems. © The Eurographics Association 2007.