Miniature High-Efficiency V-band Dielectric Traveling-Wave Tube

Period of Performance: 09/30/2004 - 09/30/2006


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Microwave Technologies, Inc.
Burke, VA 22015
Principal Investigator


We propose the prototype development of an efficient V-band dielectric traveling-wave tube (DTWT) that will provide high frequency radiation for rf communications applications in future military satellites. The DTWT is based on an efficient interaction between a small-diameter electron beam and the electromagnetic fields of a traveling wave inside a very compact and novel dielectric waveguide. During Phase I we conducted thorough analytical, numerical and computer simulation studies of the proposed amplifier which showed that the DTWT can deliver tens of watts of high-frequency radiation with high efficiency and an amazingly broad bandwidth. Our studies also show the DTWT to be twice as efficient as conventional helix traveling-wave tubes and less sensitive to shock and vibration, making the DTWT ideal for space applications. The DTWT can replace the current less-efficient helix TWT and will consume half of the power while offering backward compatibility with existing systems (plug-and-play). Based on the promising Phase I results obtained, we are now ready to move towards prototype development of the DTWT. We propose the development of an 85-watt, 50%-efficient V-band DTWT during Phase II. Once fully developed, the DTWT should be capable of replacing conventional traveling-wave tubes in telecommunication systems for future space applications by offering substantial improvements in size, weight, and especially efficiency over its counterparts.