Electron tubes magnetrons travelling wave tubes triodes etc are vacuum operating devices that are widely used as radio-frequency oscillators and amplifiers. They have a huge number of applications in industrial systems such as microwave ovens or drier s and telecommunications radars etc. The performance of electron tubes depends on several design aspects.
One fundamental limitation of high power electron tubes is the fact that the anode of these devices must withstand enormous electron densities which result in the production of secondary electrons inside the tube and consequent related to out-gassing instability efficiency losses and reduction of device lifetime. The present project aims at developing a thin film coating technology based on carbon nanotubes CNTs able to produce protective coatings for the electron tube anodes. From the electrical point of view these carbon based structures have extremely interesting properties that make them ideal for being used as protective coatings in electron tube anodes extremely high conductivity capacity to sink huge current densities without been degraded and capability to capture secondary electrons due to the electric field generated at their tip.
Throughout the project it will be built up a vacuum reactor for producing CNTS. CNTs will be growth under different conditions and the material characterised by different spectroscopic techniques atomic force microscopy and electron microscopy in order to establish the relationship between the growth conditions and the physical properties of the coatings. Real devices will be produced which will include CNT coated anodes and their performance will be tested and compared with standard devices.
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