Linear accelerator


Linear particle accelerator

A linear particle accelerator is a type of particle accelerator that greatly increases the kinetic energy of charged subatomic particles or ions by subjecting the charged particles to a series of oscillating electric potentials along a linear beamline.

A linear particle accelerator generated X-rays and high energy electrons for medicinal purposes in radiation therapy, serve as particle injectors for higher-energy accelerators, and are used directly to achieve the highest kinetic energy for light particles for particle physics.

Linac design depends on the type of particle that is being accelerated: electrons, protons or ions.

A linear accelerator consists of the following elements:

A particle source.

Electrons are generated by a cold cathode, a hot cathode, a photocathode, or radio frequency (RF) ion sources.

Protons are generated in an ion source.

Because its mass is small, electrons have much less kinetic energy than protons at the same speed.

Linacs are capable of prodigious output, producing a nearly continuous stream of particles.

Produces a reliable, flexible and accurate radiation beam.

When not in use, there is no source requiring heavy shielding

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