Physics & Astronomy ETDs

Publication Date



The saturated emission current from uranium carbide in the presence of cesium vapor were measured for four different bath temperatures: 167˚C, 197˚C, 227˚C, and 250˚C (the cesium arrival rates μa, in atoms/cm2, were 3x1018, 1x1019, 3x1019 and 6x1019). The measurements were made with a “plasma anode” type tube immersed in a constant temperature oil bath. The design of the tube is shown, and the electronic circuitry is given with an explanation of the method of measurement. The experimental data for “electron emission vs 1000/T” was plotted for the experimental μa’s and then used to make a plot of “log10 μa vs 1000/T”. The plot of “log10 μa vs 1000/T” was used to extrapolate the electron emission data to arrival rates that differed by a factor of ten. An example is given of a thermionic energy converter that uses uranium carbide as an emitter and of how the efficiency might be changed when some of the emitter material is evaporated onto an anode operating at 1000˚K.

Degree Name


Level of Degree


Department Name

Physics & Astronomy

First Committee Member (Chair)


Second Committee Member

Howard Carnes Bryant

Third Committee Member

R.L. Aamodt



Document Type