AIP Digital Archive
Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
A Paul ion trap has been developed for use as a high-resolution mass spectrometer. It is of small size (r0=10 mm), having a resolution of m/Δm=324, which is limited by the machining accuracy of the trap. It has a demonstrated mass range of 1–300 u, and a sensitivity of 2×1014 counts/Torr s, or to 500 parts per trillion detection sensitivity in a typical vacuum of 10−5 Torr. Ionization of the room-temperature gas within the trap is carried out with an electron beam traversing the trapping volume. The trap operates in a radio frequency only mode, and no dc is required. Trapping is accomplished within the well depth of the dynamic radio frequency potential, and no cooling gas is required, such as helium. This combination of factors makes the trap potentially of use for autonomous operation in harsh environments requiring low power, low weight, and low volume, such as undersea, on the surface of a planet or asteroid, or in a spacecraft. © 2002 American Institute of Physics.
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