High Current Density Carbon Nanotube Cold Cathode for TWT Applications

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA9451-06-C-0025
Agency Tracking Number: F051-001-1208
Amount: $749,000.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2006
Solicitation Year: 2005
Solicitation Topic Code: AF05-001
Solicitation Number: 2005.1
Small Business Information
3006 Longhorn Blvd., Suite 107, Austin, TX, 78758
DUNS: 013475129
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Richard Fink
 VP, Engineering
 (512) 339-5020
Business Contact
 Jacque Soptick
Title: Controller
Phone: (512) 339-5020
Email: jsoptick@appliednanotech.net
Research Institution
Traveling wave tubes (TWTs) are key components for generating high frequencies and high power for communication, radar and electronic warfare. Almost all TWTs used to date in active service use thermal cathodes as the electron source needed to generate the high current density beam required for TWT operation. The heat generated by the cathode is difficult to dissipate in space and significantly lowers the efficiency of the TWT device. We propose to demonstrate the feasibility of a carbon nanotube-based electron gun for TWT applications by installing such an electron source in an existing TWT made commercially. A cold cathode approach will improve the efficiency of the TWT and may improve the operating life of the cathode. Payload weight may be lowered since high current, high voltage transformers will not be needed. In Phase I, we showed that high current densities in the range needed for TWT applications, can be obtained from carbon nanotube (CNT) cathodes in both pulsed and DC modes. In this Phase II effort, we will demonstrate the capabilities of CNT electron sources by installing them in existing TWTs made commercially by Northrop Grumman Corp., who will be teaming with ANI to achieve this demonstration.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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