Case Study - Project Orion
For more than a quarter of a century AWE has carried out plasma physics research using its HELEN laser. This facility has reached the end of its operational life and is now being replaced with a state of the art laser facility known as Orion. The project received final planning approval in January 2006.
Orion will occupy a site about the size of a football pitch on the Aldermaston site. The new system will support experiments at extremes of temperature and density to support AWE's core missions, including the ability to safely replicate in the laboratory the physical conditions at the heart of a nuclear reaction.