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Nano and Micro Systems

ABOVE: Glass bulb vacuum-packaged carbon nanotube triode. 1 ABOVE: Glass bulb vacuum-packaged carbon nanotube triode.

High-Temperature CNT Vacuum Electronics

Recent developments in high-temperature CNT vacuum electronics at JPL have been focused on readying active devices for actual field testing in high-temperature environments. Using a manual hybrid assembly and compact glass bulb vacuum packaging techniques, several vacuum electronic active devices using CNT field emitters have been fabricated for high-temperature applications. These active devices are assembled in layers using a hybrid microassembly process that is being automated. The electrode stack is mounted on a standard commercially available header, which is then inserted inside a miniature glass bulb for vacuum packaging. These active devices have been tested and deemed ready for field testing in elementary circuits. These active devices will be coupled with high-temperature micromachined capacitors also being developed at JPL. In this past year, challenges concerning robustness of CNTs, repeatability of the microassembly process, and reliability of the vacuum packaging process have been addressed.

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