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Cryogenics, working with the Astronomy and Instrumentation Group
Cardiff University and QMCI Ltd
have developed a closed-cycle Helium 3
cooler system that runs automatically and continuously for months. The
performance of this new continuous cooler is described in detail in the
following open-access joint publication: Klemencic, G. M., et
al. "A continuous dry 300 mK cooler for THz sensing applications."
Review of Scientific Instruments 87.4 (2016): 045107 download paper here
continuous cooler is capable of maintaining an unloaded base
of less than 300 mK continuously, without the need to recycle the gases
within the final cold head, as is the case for conventional single shot
pumped 3He cooling systems. The closed dry system uses only 5 litres
of 3He gas, making it an economical alternative to traditional systems
where a long hold time is required. During testing, a temperature of
365 mK was maintained with a constant 20 μW load, simulating the
cooling requirement of a far infrared camera.
We are now developing a compact, 4
He version of the
continuous cooler to provide stable cooling to 1 degree Kelvin. We are
also working with Cardiff University to develop a sample changer that
will interface with our continuous coolers, and control instrumentation
to allow completely automated operation.
Design for a compact continuous 1K cryocooler