The OSURR is licensed to 500 kW and has multiple irradiation locations that allow instrumented experiments, enabling in-situ experiment measurements and real-time monitoring during irradiations. The non-fixed duty cycle and power enable researchers to perform experiments utilizing varying reactor power levels and even power transients. Neutron fluxes in the various irradiation facilities are in the range of 10^12-10^13 n/cm2/s at full power. There is also a beam facility with a thermal flux ~10^6 n/cm2/s is not constrained by a fixed duty-cycle or operating power, allowing great flexibility in scheduling research and education activities.
In the next-to-core position in which either a 6.5" I.D. or a 9.5" I.D. external dry tube can be located, irradiations can be performed in a neutron flux up to ≈10^12 n/cm2/s. Among the possibilities for use are experiments involving instrumented, high-temperature irradiations of prototype instrumentation for next-generation reactors, sensors and sensor materials, and optical fibers designed for up to 1600 °C. In addition to the external large-experiment dry tubes, the reactor also has two 2.5" I.D. in-core dry tubes that support instrumented experiments, but at ambient temperature.
The Nuclear Science User Facilities (NSUF) is the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Energy's only designated nuclear energy user facility. Through peer-reviewed proposal processes, the NSUF provides researchers access to neutron, ion, and gamma irradiations, post-irradiation examination and beamline capabilities at Idaho National Laboratory and a diverse mix of university, national laboratory and industry partner institutions.