U.S. Particle Accelerator School

Introduction to Pulsed-Power High-Current Beams and Their Applications course

Sponsoring University:

University of California San Diego


Introduction to Pulsed-Power High-Current Beams and Their Applications


Stanley Humphries, Jr., University of New Mexico and Craig Olson, Sandia National Laboratories

This comprehensive introductory course examines (1) pulsed power techniques to produce high voltages, (2) beam generation methods using various acceleration principles, (3) special methods for beam transport and focusing, and (4) specific applications for both electron and ion beams. Pulsed-power high-current electron and ion beams are beams with moderate energies (105 - 109 eV), very high currents (103 - 107 Amperes), and very high powers (108 - 1013 Watts). Pulsed power techniques include Marx generators, transmission lines, power flow, switches (electrically triggered, laser-triggered, plasma opening, and magnetic), inductive voltage adders, and rep-rated systems. Beam generation methods include single-gap electron accelerators (electron diodes), multi-gap electron accelerators, single-gap ion accelerators (ion diodes), and multi-gap ion accelerators. Transport and focusing methods involve charge neutralization, current neutralization, gas breakdown, several pressure regimes, various lenses, emittance growth minimization, and analysis of potential instabilities. Specific electron beam applications include, e.g., x-ray simulators, radiography, microwave generation, and sterilization; specific ion beam applications include, e.g., inertial confinement fusion, transmutation of nuclear waste, tritium production, and materials surface modification. Prerequisites: classical mechanics and electricity and magnetism.