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The use of an addressable, faceted cathode has been proposed as a method of modulating current injection in a magnetron to improve performance and control phase. To implement the controllable electron emission, five-sided and ten-sided faceted planar cathodes employing gated field emitters are considered as these emitters could be fabricated on flat substrates. For demonstration, the conformal finite-difference time-domain particle-in-cell simulation, as implemented in VORPAL, has been used to model a ten-cavity, rising sun magnetron using the modulated current sources and benchmarked against a typical continuous current source. For the modulated, ten-sided faceted cathode case, the electrons are injected from three emitter elements on each of the ten facets. Each emitter is turned ON and OFF in sequence at the oscillating frequency with five emitters ON at one time to drive the five electron spokes of the π-mode. The emitter duty cycle is then 1/6th the Radio-Frequency (RF) period. Simulations show a fast start-up time as low as 35 ns for the modulated case compared to 100 ns for the continuous current cases. Analysis of the RF phase using the electron spoke locations and the RF magnetic field components shows that the phase is controlled for the modulated case while it is random, as typical, for the continuous current case. Active phase control during oscillation was demonstrated by shifting the phase of the electron injection 180° after oscillations started. The 180° phase shift time was approximately 25 RF cycles.

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Copyright 2014, American Institute of Physics. This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and the American Institute of Physics. The following article appeared in Applied Physics Letters, 104, 233507, and may be found at doi: 10.1063/1.4883395