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High speed charged particles are required for nuclear and atomic investigations. Cyclotron is one of the devices popularly known as “particle accelerator” to accelerate charged particle to a very high speed. It uses “crossed” magnetic and electric fields at right angles to achieve the objective. The chief role of magnetic field is to make the process of acceleration confined to a small and manageable region. As far as the change in speed is concerned, it is affected only by the electric field. Recall that magnetic field can not change magnitude of velocity i.e. speed.

But we should be careful in extrapolating above facts to obvious conclusions. As a matter of fact, we shall find that magnetic field actually affects the speed attained by the charged particle indirectly by controlling number of revolutions in the cyclotron. On the other hand, the speed acquired by the charged particle is independent of applied voltage. We shall explore all these aspects in detail in this module.

Acceleration due to electric field

Electric force accelerates particle only to change its speed if motion of the charged particle is in the direction of electric field. A potential difference V accelerates particle to achieve a speed as given by :

1 2 m v 2 = e V

v = 2 e V m

There is, however, difficulty in generating potential difference greater than 10 6 V. For this limiting value, the speed attained by a proton would be :

v = 2 X 1.6 X 10 - 19 X 10 6 / 1.66 X 10 - 27 v = 1.928 X 10 14 = 1.39 X 10 7 m / s

This is just 4.63 % of the speed of light and is not good enough. This speed of the particle is thus required to be subjected to repeated application of electric force. This is done linearly by electric force in what is known as “linear accelerator”. Else, we use magnetic field to bend the path of motion and present the charged particle repeatedly to electric field for acceleration as in cyclotron. We should know that there is relative size and cost comparison and advantages between linear accelerator and cyclotron. Sometimes though, the two types of accelerators are used in conjunction where cyclotron functions as the initial accelerator for the system of particle accelerators.

Working of cyclotron

The particles accelerated by cyclotron

The accelerators are used for accelerating charged elementary particles or charged ions. It can not accelerate a neutral particle. Besides, the cyclotron as described generally, is not used for accelerating light mass particles like electron or positron. The reason is that electron having negligible mass accelerates rather too quickly for repeated acceleration within the given size of cyclotron. Instead, the light mass charged particles are accelerated by a device known as “betatron” which uses torus shaped vacuum tube as secondary coil. The tube is a hollow cylinder shaped in a circle. The varying magnetic field, produced by secondary coil, sets up electric field which, in turn, accelerates electron through the tube. On the other hand, the magnetic field due to primary coil, spins the electron and keeps it in the center of the path.

Questions & Answers

what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
what's the easiest and fastest way to the synthesize AgNP?
Damian Reply
types of nano material
abeetha Reply
I start with an easy one. carbon nanotubes woven into a long filament like a string
many many of nanotubes
what is the k.e before it land
what is the function of carbon nanotubes?
I'm interested in nanotube
what is nanomaterials​ and their applications of sensors.
Ramkumar Reply
what is nano technology
Sravani Reply
what is system testing?
preparation of nanomaterial
Victor Reply
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Electricity and magnetism. OpenStax CNX. Oct 20, 2009 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10909/1.13
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