Laser samples are irradiated in stacked disks machined from pure aluminum (left). A minimum of three cavities in each disk are allotted standards
for 3-dimensional characterization of the neutron flux gradient experienced in the reactor.
Subsequent to irradiation and a cooling off period that allows short-lived isotopes to decay to safe levels, the individual sample grains are transferred to
a copper planchette. This is then placed within the ultrahigh vacuum system beneath a UHV viewport at the end of a flexible arm of the extraction line. The sample chamber is then bolted to a
computer-controlled moveable stage beneath the laser bench. Computer automation allows for non-stop analysis of all the samples within the planchette through a sequence of heating steps.