Description: We investigated the propagation of MV electrical pulses along coaxial transmission lines (TL) in vacuum with network simulations and experiments. One goal was to establish how well a 3 m-long TL would sharpen the output pulse of a relativistic electron beam accelerator. Sharpening occurs as the cathode of the TL emits electrons and the current flow forces the TL into magnetic cut-off. The other goal was to determine how well field emission must be suppressed in a TL to avoid distortion of a propagating pulse. Simulations predict a four-fold risetime improvement (8 ns to 2 ns) through magnetic insulation in a TL with an electrical length (10 ns) comparable to the risetime of the input pulse. In the laboratory we have shown a five-fold improvement (15 to 3 ns) with a velvet covered 3-m line and a 7.5 fold improvement (2 ns) when a vacuum flashover switch was incorporated between the first third and the last two thirds of the TL. Simple arguments and TL simulations suggest that even a small fraction (1 or 2%) of Child-Langmuir (CL) space charge limited emission will distort a propagating voltage pulse. This result is of particular importance when the TL is part of a voltage diagnostic system.
Date: June 1, 1987
Creator: Di Capua, M.S.; Goerz, D.A. & Freytag, E.K.
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