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Proceedings Paper

Pulse shortening in high-peak-power Reltron tubes
Author(s): Robert B. Miller
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Paper Abstract

Most high-peak-power (>= 100 MW) microwave tubes are seemingly limited to an output RF energy per pulse of about 100 J. While Titan's L-band Reltron tubes have achieved 250 J/pulse, we have also observed pulse-shortening phenomena in both the modulating cavity and output cavity regions. We have examined the effects of construction materials, fabrication techniques, vacuum pressure, and conditioning. We will present data from these experiments and discuss a plausible pulse-shortening hypothesis involving electric- field-induced gas evolution and subsequent ionization. We believe that our energy-per-pulse limitations are the result of our current tube construction approach which uses explosive emission cathodes, plastic insulators, and grids to define cavity boundaries. While some simple extensions of this approach offers some hope for increasing the energy per pulse to perhaps 500 joules in L-band, we believe that achieving >= 1 kJ/pulse will require the use of conventional microwave tube construction techniques, including thermionic cathodes, ceramic insulators, and brazed joining with high-temperature bakeout. We will present the design of an L-band Reltron tube having these features.

Paper Details

Date Published: 28 October 1996
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 2843, Intense Microwave Pulses IV, (28 October 1996); doi: 10.1117/12.255385
Show Author Affiliations
Robert B. Miller, Titan Advanced Innovative Technologies (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2843:
Intense Microwave Pulses IV
Howard E. Brandt, Editor(s)

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