The Nanophysics of Electron Emission and Breakdown for High Power Microwave Source
Final rept. 1 Jun 2004-30 Sep 2009
WISCONSIN UNIV-MADISON DEPT OF ELECTRICAL AND COMPUTER ENGINEERING
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The primary objective of this MURI-funded consortium is to enable the realization of long-lived, low-maintenance, and reliable hard-vacuum high power microwave HPM device technologies by establishing new physical understanding of electron emissionabsorption and plasma breakdown phenomena from the nano- to the macro-scale near conducting and insulating surfaces. The research should generate major advances in cathodes for intense high power, high current density electron beams while addressing the problem of electrical breakdown at windows, anodes, and collectors in low and high frequency HPM devices. A second major goal of the consortium is to train outstanding students in the HPM field. Specific research topics include breakdown and plasma formation within the device and on the air side of vacuum windows, attainment of high current density HPM cathode emission, nonuniform cathode emission, rapid cathode degradation, surface plasma at the cathode, and related topics. All of these challenges arise from working in a regime of extremely high electric field DC and RF, thermal, and charged particle impact stresses, and must be mitigated to allow reliable operation of HPM devices. The research activities envision application in LS-band and W-band microwave frequency regimes, consistent with current and anticipated future DoD mission interests.
- Electrical and Electronic Equipment
- Plasma Physics and Magnetohydrodynamics
- Radiofrequency Wave Propagation