Helically corrugated waveguides for compression of frequency swept microwave pulses

P. MacInnes, A. W. Cross, K. Ronald, A. D. R. Phelps, W. He, G. Burt, A. R. Young, C. G. Whyte, S. V. Samsonov, G. G. Denisov, V. L. Bratman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution book


Short pulse high power microwave radiation can be used for time of flight diagnostic measurements in plasmas, e.g. density profiles by reflectometry. A three-fold helical corrugation of the inner surface of a waveguide synthesises eigenwaves having useful dispersive properties by combining two distinct counter-rotating modes of a corresponding circular waveguide. The dispersion may be tailored to the requirements of an application by adjusting the amplitude and period of the corrugations. Such dispersive properties have proven useful in broadband radiation amplifiers, or to achieve passive compression of smoothly frequency modulated microwave pulses. The paper presents results of experiments using a solid state source to produce an optimised frequency-chirped input pulse and amplified by a high power Travelling Wave Tube Amplifier (TWTA). The waveforms of the input and output microwave signals were captured on a UHF Digital Storage Oscilloscope. The results demonstrated at 5.7kW input power levels that X-band radiation pulses of 67ns duration with 5% frequency modulation can be compressed into a 2.8ns pulse having 12 times higher peak power, whilst retaining 50% of the energy in the input signal. The technique offers great potential for scaling to higher frequencies and power levels.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication33rd EPS Conference on Plasma Physics 2006, EPS 2006 - Europhysics Conference Abstracts
EditorsF. De Marco, G. Vlad
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2006
Event33rd European Physical Society Conference on Plasma Physics 2006, EPS 2006 - Rome, Italy
Duration: 19 Jun 200623 Jun 2006

Publication series

Name33rd EPS Conference on Plasma Physics 2006, EPS 2006


Conference33rd European Physical Society Conference on Plasma Physics 2006, EPS 2006


  • high power microwave radiation
  • plasmas
  • Helically corrugated waveguides (HCWs)
  • pulse compression

Cite this