Experimental Investigation of Time-Resolved Electron Beam Energy Distributions Generated in a Transient Hollow Cathode Discharge


In this paper, a retarding potential energy analyzer (RPEA) specific for pulsed electron beams within the pressure range of tens of mTorr is developed and used to investigate the energy of transient hollow cathode discharge produced electron beams. This RPEA has been applied in a pseudospark-based electron beam source at applied potential up to 20 kV. Experimental investigations under applied potential of 5 kV, 10 kV, 15 kV, and 20 kV were carried out and the time-resolved electron energy distributions are constructed. The numbers of electrons within various energy groups are calculated from the time-resolved electron energy spectra. Results show that the maximum number of electrons is emitted within the energy range of 40%-60% of the full applied potential on the pseudospark device, and varies from 22.5 ± 2.0% to 38.9±2.0% of the total number of emitted electrons. Additionally, the energy transformation efficiency of stored electrical energy to electron beam energy is calculated from presented data. The energy transformation efficiency increases from 11.4 ± 0.5% at 5?kV breakdown voltage to 23.2 ± 3.5% at 20 kV breakdown voltage.


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Electron Beams; Cathodes; Gas Discharges; Carrier Generation; Electron Beam Deposition

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Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


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© 2013 American Institute of Physics (AIP), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jan 2013