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Very High Efficiency, Miniaturized, Long-Lived Alpha Particle Power Source Using Diamond Devices for Extreme Space EnvironmentsA power source that converts a-particle energy into electricity by coulomb collision in doped diamond films is described. Alpha particle decay from curium-244 creates electron-hole pairs by free- ing electrons and holes inside the crystal lattice in N- and P-doped diamond films. Ohmic contacts provide electrical connection to an electronic device. Due to the built-in electric field at the rectifying junction across the hT- and P-doped diamond films, the free electrons are constrained to traveling in generally one direction. This one direction then supplies electrons in a manner similar to that of a battery. The radioactive curium layer may be disposed on diamond films for even distribution of a-particle radiation. The resulting power source may be mounted on a diamond substrate that serves to insulate structures below the diamond substrate from a-particle emission. Additional insulation or isolation may be provided in order to prevent damage from a-particle collision. N-doped silicon may be used instead of N-doped diamond.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Document Type
Other - Patent
Elizabeth A Kolawa
Jagdishbhai U Patel
Jean-Pierre Fleurial
Date Acquired
August 22, 2013
Publication Date
June 22, 2004
Subject Category
Electronics And Electrical Engineering
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
Patent Application
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