High power microwave surface flashover seed electron production methods

M. Thomas, J. Foster, H. Krompholz, A. Neuber

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Surface flashover imposes a fundamental limitation to the magnitude of high power microwaves which can be radiated from the vacuum environment of the source into atmospheric conditions. Providing seed electrons through various methods allows for initiatory conditions to be more closely controlled and the delay time variations to be reduced so that developmental mechanisms can be more closely examined. The experiment uses a coaxial magnetron capable of producing ∼a 4.5 MW, 3 μs pulse, at 2.85 GHz propagating in the TE10 mode. The pulse rise time measured at the window is reduced using a spark gap pulse steepening technique. The fast rise time pulse propagates through the dielectric into an atmospheric test chamber where various conditions such as gas pressure, type of gas, UV illumination, and charged particle creation by radioactive sources can be controlled. Previous research has shown the significant impacts of UV radiation on the delay time averages and statistical distributions. Surface distributed seeding sources and volume distributed sources will be discussed while the primary focus of this paper will address use of alpha radiation as an ionizing agent. Thus far, a reduction in average delay time by as much as 60% has been achieved at sub-microsecond time scales, which also significantly affected the width of the statistical distributions of the delay time. Alpha particles have a short penetration distance in air which makes them a good candidate for study since the number of electronion pars created along the path is large. Analysis of the alpha particles influences will be discussed along with a statistical analysis of breakdown delay in the presence of ionization.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2010 IEEE International Power Modulator and High Voltage Conference, IPMHVC 2010
Pages141-144
Number of pages4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2010
Event2010 IEEE International Power Modulator and High Voltage Conference, IPMHVC 2010 - Atlanta, GA, United States
Duration: May 23 2010May 27 2010

Publication series

NameProceedings of the 2010 IEEE International Power Modulator and High Voltage Conference, IPMHVC 2010

Conference

Conference2010 IEEE International Power Modulator and High Voltage Conference, IPMHVC 2010
CountryUnited States
CityAtlanta, GA
Period05/23/1005/27/10

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    Thomas, M., Foster, J., Krompholz, H., & Neuber, A. (2010). High power microwave surface flashover seed electron production methods. In Proceedings of the 2010 IEEE International Power Modulator and High Voltage Conference, IPMHVC 2010 (pp. 141-144). [5958314] (Proceedings of the 2010 IEEE International Power Modulator and High Voltage Conference, IPMHVC 2010). https://doi.org/10.1109/IPMHVC.2010.5958314