Department of Physics and Astronomy: Publications and Other Research


Date of this Version



Review of Scientific Instruments (April 2004) 75(4): 1,073-1,077. DOI: 10.1063/1.1666988.


Copyright 2004, American Institute of Physics. Used by permission.


We investigate the properties of a commercial inverted magnetron pressure gauge for use as a source of slow metastable rare gas atoms. We find that the velocity distribution of the atoms as well as the pressure dependence of the output flux agree with a simple model. This shows that the low-velocity output of the source is enhanced over the Maxwell–Boltzmann form due to a velocity-dependent excitation probability. For argon, the center-line intensity per unit area of the source is measured to be greater than 4.2x1015 Ar 1s5 atoms/(s srm2) at a pressure of 23 mPa. When observing the entire source area, the center-line intensity is at least 2.6x1011 Ar 1s5 atoms/(s sr).

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