In the summer of 2017 Statebourne Cryogenics delivered their largest static high efficiency Helium Dewar to date.

In late 2016 Statebourne Cryogenics were proud to win the bidding to supply a 20 000 litre helium Dewar for the European Spallation Source (ESS). The ESS is the latest advancement in high-power neutron spallation sources. The European Spallation Source is one of the largest science and technology infrastructure projects being built today. It is a pan-European project bringing together funding and expertise from 15 European countries with the main facility under construction at Lund in Sweden.

For Statebourne Cryogenics this represented the chance to build the largest high efficiency static Helium Dewar to date. It was task only made possible by Statebourne’s program of continual improvements to our manufacturing and design techniques and also significant inward investment in our facilities to keep us at the cutting edge of cryogenic vessel design and efficient manufacturing. In 2015 Statebourne added a 5000m2 modern factory to its existing manufacturing complex to enable the handling and construction of larger and more complex cryogenic tanks. As a result, we had the capabilities and confidence to design and build this 20 000 litre Helium Dewar for one of the highest profile research projects in the world.

Building such a tank was always going to throw up challenges, not least that shipping such a large unit was always going to be difficult and meant that we needed to keep the design as compact as possible yet still offering high levels of performance. One of several ways we achieved this was to modernise our insulation technology and wrapping techniques – we designed a new super insulation wrapping machine that would give us better control of the insulation layering process. Using a mixture of materials in a tightly controlled pattern we are able to build to tighter tolerances. As a result, the insulation layers take up less space, aid vacuum performance, reduce waste and reduce manufacturing hours. The new wrapping machine is also versatile and has already been utilised on other projects, proving to be a another valuable tool in Statebourne’s relentless drive to improve quality and efficiency.

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