Fusion Message Board

In this space, visitors are invited to post any comments, questions, or skeptical observations about Philo T. Farnsworth's contributions to the field of Nuclear Fusion research.

Subject: Re: Microwave experimentation
Date: Jul 31, 11:02 am
Poster: Jim Lux

On Jul 31, 11:02 am, Jim Lux wrote:

>>What follows is a warning:
>>Experimenting with microwaves from any, normally operated, oven type of magnetron is playing with fire.
>Damn straight. There are lots of kinds of
>magnetrons out there, should you decide that you absolutely need to do IF research, and the oven microwave is probably the worst choice you could possibly make. I can't imagine a serious experimenter ever using one for anything legitimate. If you want to experiment with IF, try using a Gunn diode or a commercial radar maggie. Real (non food) magnetrons have flanges made to be mated to standard waveguides and can be thusly contained. The circuitry required to control them is nontrivial, though.

I don't know that a 2.45 GHz Magnetron from an oven is all that hard to work with. The probe sticks into the waveguide and there isn't any leakage problem. I think that if you know enough to safely use a standard magnetron (with WG flanges, etc.), then you probably know enough to safely build a suitable cavity for the microwave oven magnetron to work into.

Even a moderate power (a few 10's of mW) Gunn source is hot enough to cook your eyes if you are stupid enough to look into the waveguide port, or, and this is the real problem, if it scatters and forms a hot spot somwhere a ways away which happens to coincide with a delicate part of you.

I suppose the overall moral is that ignorance kills and maims. kW magnetrons are potentially dangerous in the same way that HV power supplies, welding torches, and high power lasers are.... A moment's inattention can have irrevocable consequences.