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Prof. Vadim Dudnikov spends Valentine's week with the ISIS Ion Source Section

Creating an efficient ion source is an art, and even sometime referred as magic. The new joint project is aimed to turn the art and magic of ion sources into predictable science.


Creating an efficient ion source is an art. According to Dr Horst Klein, who summarized the 20 ICFA Workshop on ion sources, “The ion sources, and especially the H- sources, are still somewhat a black magic”.

Magic has certainly surrounded the last week’s visit of Prof Dudnikov to Oxford, who was hosted by JAI and stayed in the charming Harry Potter-like atmosphere of Jesus College.

Prof Andrei Seryi said, “We were really happy to welcome Prof Dudnikov, the world expert on ion sources, and expect that our joint project with ISIS and Muons Inc. will indeed help to turn the art and magic of ion sources into predictable science”.

Professor Dudnikov (Muons Inc., USA) is the inventor of the Ceasiated Penning Surface Plasma Source, which in particular used to produce H– ions for the ISIS accelerator. The “Dudnikov Source” has delivered beams to ISIS and many other accelerators for over 25 years.

Dan Faircloth, ISIS Ion Source Section Leader said, “It has been very useful and productive to have Vadim with us for a week. It’s been great to have advice from such an experthe has given us many suggestions on how to improve the ion source”.

Dan Faircloth and the ion source team at ISIS have been developing the ion source to increase its performance and reliability. Scott Lawrie, JAI PhD student and member of the ion source team at ISIS is working to develop a detailed understanding of source plasma behavior at extraction.

During Vadim‘s visit, experiments to study the effect of varying the plasma cell configuration were conducted at RAL. Improving of the discharge stability was clearly observed. During the busy week, Vadim had also given lectures on ion sources both at RAL and to JAI students in Oxford.

Dan Faircloth said, “Scott’s PhD work, combined with the experiments performed this week, have paved the way for a design of a advanced scaled source”. A larger, scaled-up source is required to meet the 60 mA, 2 ms, 50 Hz beam requirements of the Front End Test Stand (FETS) project. Work to design a scaled source will begin this coming financial year.

On the photo (left to right): Andrei Seryi, Vadim Dudnikov, Scott Lawrie, Alan Letchford, Dan Faircloth. On the table – “Dudnikov ion source”. Feb 13, 2012.