19 August 2009 Stabilizing a pulsed field emission from an array of carbon nanotubes
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In this paper, we propose a new design configuration for a carbon nanotube (CNT) array based pulsed field emission device to stabilize the field emission current. In the new design, we consider a pointed height distribution of the carbon nanotube array under a diode configuration with two side gates maintained at a negative potential to obtain a highly intense beam of electrons localized at the center of the array. The randomly oriented CNTs are assumed to be grown on a metallic substrate in the form of a thin film. A model of field emission from an array of CNTs under diode configuration was proposed and validated by experiments. Despite high output, the current in such a thin film device often decays drastically. The present paper is focused on understanding this problem. The random orientation of the CNTs and the electromechanical interaction are modeled to explain the self-assembly. The degraded state of the CNTs and the electromechanical force are employed to update the orientation of the CNTs. Pulsed field emission current at the device scale is finally obtained by using the Fowler-Nordheim equation by considering a dynamic electric field across the cathode and the anode and integration of current densities over the computational cell surfaces on the anode side. Furthermore we compare the subsequent performance of the pointed array with the conventionally used random and uniform arrays and show that the proposed design outperforms the conventional designs by several orders of magnitude. Based on the developed model, numerical simulations aimed at understanding the effects of various geometric parameters and their statistical features on the device current history are reported.
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D. Roy Mahapatra, S. Anand, N. Sinha, R. V. N. Melnik, "Stabilizing a pulsed field emission from an array of carbon nanotubes", Proc. SPIE 7399, Carbon Nanotubes, Graphene, and Associated Devices II, 73990M (19 August 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.826166; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.826166

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