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High Voltage, High Power Diamond Solid-State Switch for Pulsed Power and Other…

Award Information

Department of Defense
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
1996 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Alameda Applied Sciences Corporation
3077 Teagarden Street San Leandro, CA 94577-5720
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 1996
Title: High Voltage, High Power Diamond Solid-State Switch for Pulsed Power and Other Applications
Agency / Branch: DOD / DARPA
Contract: N/A
Award Amount: $98,085.00


Alameda Applied Sciences Corporation (AASC) proposes a three phase effort with the ultimate goal of producing a marketable diamond switch suitable for several pulsed power and other applications in the defence arena. The presently used spark gaps have several drawbacks including switch jitter, large and variable inductance, lifetime and physical size. A low inductance solid-state switch capable of switching 100 kV, 100kA at a high repetition rate would be desireable. The physical and electrical properties of diamond make it uniquely suited to very high power electrical switching applications. Electron beam controlled diamond switches have been demonstrated at moderate (22 kV) voltages and current densities >5 kA/cm2. Diamond, normally a good insulator, can carry large currents when electron-hole pairs are created by the absorption of an energetic electron beam. The objectives of the Phase I research is to study the switching properties of diamond under high field stress (1-10 MV/cm) to develop a design for a practical diamond switch. The switch will be fabricated and validated in Phase II. Commercialization is planned for Phase III. Anticipated Benefits: DoD's pulsed power supplies for nuclear weapons effects simulators and other applications including high power lasers would benefit from the low inductance, low jitter, fast rise-time, high power diamond switch to be developed under the proposed effort. Potential applications include switching systems for the nation's power grid, high power accelerators, the More Electric Aircraft, automobiles and drilling rigs.

Principal Investigator:

Rahul Prasad

Business Contact:

Small Business Information at Submission:

Alameda Applied Sciences Corp.
6250 Bullard Drive Oakland, CA 94611

Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No