2018 | ANNUAL REPORT 15 Shield Sample Preparation Area Shielded Sample Preparation Area The characterization of irradiated fuels and materials depends on the avail- ability of high-quality samples that require great care to produce, which is often a limiting factor in research. IMCL’s SSPA provides specialized sample preparation capability for fuels that supplements what is available in the Hot Fuel Examination Facility (HFEF). SSPA includes a shielded sample preparation cell, an optical microscope, and a sample transfer cell that provides connectivity to HFEF and other facilities with an IMCL shielded container.A glovebox and hood line are also available for preparation and decontamination of lower activity samples.