Electrostatic Particle Accelerator Construction


Particle accelerator construction pictures:

Due to the accelerators modular design, the entire system can be dismantled and then re-assembled within an hour. This was done, and pictures of the construction process were documented.

Particle accelerator main page


Accelerator parts:



I channel front:

Holes are cut in the i channel surface for t-nuts.


I channel mounting:

Holes are drilled in the i channel sides for connection bolts. Holes in the 8020 are for tightening the bolts via an allen key.


Connection bolts:

Connection bolts are inserted into the holes and t-nuts are attached.


Assembled frame:

Bolt heads slide into the channels in the 8020 and are tightened with an allen key. Handles and spacers are attached.


Front spacer:

Front spacer is attached to maintain proper separation between the 8020 extrusions.


Beam line shield:

Holes are drilled into the PVC shield for mounting to the frame.


Shield attachment:

Shield mounts to the frame with nylon bolts.


Beam line and spacers:

Glass beam line is outfitted with foam spacers to center it within the shield.


Cathode parts:

Cathode assembly consists of a fine platinum wire held in the swagelok fitting by a welding tip.


Cathode Assembled:



Cathode and connector:

Cathode mounts to glass beam line and seals via the teflon ferrules.

The HV cable consists of a voltmeter wire within a vinyl tube within a rubber tygon tube. The cable connects to the cathode with a banana plug soldered to the brass cap on the end of the swagelok.


Diffusion pump:

The diffusion pump mounts to the bottom of the frame and provides the high vacuum capability as well as physical support to the vacuum hub.

  • Rated at 105 liters per second pumping speed.
  • Recommended backing pump rated at 2 CFM.
    Diffusion pump uses 80 cc fluid.
  • Cartridge heater rated at 300watts @115volts.
  • Warm up time 5 min, cool down time 10 min.
  • Pump is water cooled at rate of 1/8 gpm.
  • Mounting flange 4" OD x 2" ID.
  • Six 7/16" bolt holes on 3 5/16 bolt circle

Vacuum hub:

Vacuum hub connects the beam line to the diffusion pump and penning gauge.


Main components:

Frame, beam line, vacuum hub, and diffusion pump ready for connection.


Beam line installed:

Beam line slides into beam line shield, and diffusion pump mounts to the channels on the bottom of the frame.


Vacuum hub mounted:

Vacuum hub connects to the inlet of the diffusion pump.


ZnS screen:

ZnS screen glows when hit by accelerated electrons proving accelerator operation.

ZnS from an old green screen computer monitor is coated onto a paper screen that is placed within the beam line


Accelerator Assembled:





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