skip to main content

Title: Plasma Processing of SRF Cavities for the next Generation Of Particle Accelerators

The cost-effective production of high frequency accelerating fields are the foundation for the next generation of particle accelerators. The Ar/Cl2 plasma etching technology holds the promise to yield a major reduction in cavity preparation costs. Plasma-based dry niobium surface treatment provides an excellent opportunity to remove bulk niobium, eliminate surface imperfections, increase cavity quality factor, and bring accelerating fields to higher levels. At the same time, the developed technology will be more environmentally friendly than the hydrogen fluoride-based wet etching technology. Plasma etching of inner surfaces of standard multi-cell SRF cavities is the main goal of this research in order to eliminate contaminants, including niobium oxides, in the penetration depth region. Successful plasma processing of multi-cell cavities will establish this method as a viable technique in the quest for more efficient components of next generation particle accelerators. In this project the single-cell pill box cavity plasma etching system is developed and etching conditions are determined. An actual single cell SRF cavity (1497 MHz) is plasma etched based on the pill box cavity results. The first RF test of this plasma etched cavity at cryogenic temperature is obtained. The system can also be used for other surface modifications, including tailoring niobiummore » surface properties, surface passivation or nitriding for better performance of SRF cavities. The results of this plasma processing technology may be applied to most of the current SRF cavity fabrication projects. In the course of this project it has been demonstrated that a capacitively coupled radio-frequency discharge can be successfully used for etching curved niobium surfaces, in particular the inner walls of SRF cavities. The results could also be applicable to the inner or concave surfaces of any 3D structure other than an SRF cavity.« less
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
ODURF Grant 325111
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Old Dominion University Research Foundation, Norfolk, VA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), High Energy Physics (HEP) (SC-25)
Country of Publication:
United States
43 PARTICLE ACCELERATORS; Plasma-surface processing; capacitive radio-frequency discharge; Niobium oxides; SRF cavity; dry etching