Status of the Nevada Shocker at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Conference held: Dallas, TX, USA, 15-18 June 2003
The Nevada shocker is a 540 kV, 7 /spl Omega/, 50 ns pulsed power device based on Marx bank and Blumlein technologies. The Marx bank is composed of nine 60 kV capacitors charged in series with a gamma high voltage source connected by means of Ross relays in an air environment. A trigatron switch energized with an isolated mini capacitor bank is used to erect the Marx bank. The trigatron switch and erecting electrodes are contained in a gas manifold pressurized to 20 /spl plusmn/ 1 psi with dry air. The energy is released sequentially through an inductor and a water filled charging transmission line to the Blumlein immersed in deionized water. The Blumlein shapes and compresses the energy into a 50 ns pulse upon discharge. A self-breaking water switch initiates the release of energy in the Blumlein. The energy flows through a water filled discharging transmission line to the diode end of the Nevada Shocker. The current diode end of the Blumlein supports vacuum pressures as low as 6.5 /spl times/ 10/sup -6/ Torr. The chamber is pumped with the aid of a roughing pump and a cryogenic vacuum pump. The vacuum section of the Nevada Shocker is currently being rebuilt to incorporate mechanical and thermal loading capabilities with sensors located at the experiment. A number of diagnostic developments are currently underway to support flash over studies on plastics. Resistive probe and differential B-dot diagnostics with the aid of a 6 GHz 20 GS/s TDS 6604 real time scope is documented demonstrating the capability of the machine.