Industrial, Medical & Security Systems

 

The MicroLinac: low cost, miniature X-band linac to replace radioisotope sources

The MicroLinac is a novel and compact linear electron beam accelerator; it is capable of producing radiation that mimics the most common radionuclide sources while posing no proliferation hazards.  Unlike X-ray tubes, the MicroLinac produces high energy X-rays and hence most closely resembles the performance of common isotope sources, such as Ir-192 and Cs-137.  The core of the device consists of a short 9.4 GHz standing-wave accelerating structure powered by an inexpensive magnetron. 

 

Prototypes of the MicroLinac for two different applications are currently being produced, funded with two Phase II SBIR contracts (one from DHS, the other from DOE).  One version will be a portable replacement for radiography isotope sources such as Ir-192.  The other will be a higher energy and higher power version for use in self-contained irradiators for research and blood irradiation (i.e. Cs-137 replacement). 

 

The Radiatron: An Inexpensive High-Current Betatron

High-energy electron sources are finding a growing number of applications in industry, medicine, and national security applications.  However, current state-of-the-art devices for generating high-power, high-energy electron beams are large, expensive, and unreliable.

 

RadiaBeam Technologies is currently developing a novel type of betatron (circular induction) accelerator, the Radiatron, with help from a DOE SBIR grant.  The Radiatron will be an affordable, high average power source of electrons in the range of 1 – 10 MeV.  It is a modern rethinking of the betatron, a type of induction accelerator (using no RF), with two key improvements: the deployment of a Fixed Field Alternating Gradient (FFAG) focusing scheme and the use of modern, low loss magnetic materials.  In combination these increase the average possible current in the betatron by >10 times, allowing it to match the higher-power capability of RF accelerators at a fraction of the cost.