Enhanced angular current intensity from Schottky emitters

S. Fujita, T. R. C. Wells, W. Ushio, H. Sato, M. M. El-Gomati

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


P>Even though the Schottky emitter is a high-brightness source of choice for electron beam systems, its angular current intensity is substantially lower than that of thermionic cathodes, rendering the emitter impractical for applications that require high beam current. In this study, two strategies were attempted to enhance its angular intensity, and their experimental results are reported. The first scheme is to employ a higher extraction field for increasing the brightness. However, the tip shape transformation was found to induce undesirably elevated emission from the facet edges at high fields. The second scheme exploits the fact that the angular intensity is proportional to the square of the electron gun focal length [Fujita, S. & Shimoyama, H. (2005) Theory of cathode trajectory characterization by canonical mapping transformation. J. Electron Microsc. 54, 331-343], which can be increased by scaling-up the emitter tip radius. A high angular current intensity (J similar to 1.5 mA sr-1) was obtained from a scaled-up emitter. Preliminary performance tests were conducted on an electron probe-forming column by substituting the new emitter for the original tungsten filament gun. The beam current up to a few microamperes was achieved with submicron spatial resolution.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-222
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Microscopy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2010


  • Cathode
  • electron gun
  • electron source

Cite this