What is Cyclotron?
A Cyclotron is a type of particle-accelerator in which charged particles accelerate outwards from the centre along a spiral path. These particles are held to a spiral trajectory by a static magnetic field and accelerated by a rapidly varying electric field.
Working of cyclotron
A cyclotron accelerates a charged particle beam using a high frequency alternating voltage which is applied between two hollow “D”-shaped sheet metal electrodes called “dees” inside a vacuum chamber.
The dees are placed face to face with a narrow gap between them, creating a cylindrical space within them for the particles to move. Then, the particles are injected into the centre of this space. The magnetic field causes the path of the particles to bend in a circle due to the Lorentz force perpendicular to their direction of motion.
Uses of cyclotron
For several decades, these were the best sources of high-energy beams for nuclear physics experiments. However, these are still in use for this type of research.
Treat Cancer: Cyclotrons can be used in particle therapy to treat cancer, using the ion beams from cyclotrons can be used to penetrate the body and kill tumours by radiation damage.
The frequency is given by:
q is charge of particle,
B is magnetic field used in cyclotron,
M is mass of the charged particle.
Consider a particle of charge q revolving in the path of radius r with a velocity v. Now for circular motion:
Centripetal force = Lorentz force due to magnetic field B
Therefore Angular velocity (ω) = vr
Time Period (T) =2πω
Cyclotron frequency (n) =1T
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