An embodiment of the invention is a microcavity plasma device that can be controlled by a low voltage electron emitter. The microcavity plasma device includes driving electrodes disposed proximate to a microcavity and arranged to contribute to generation of plasma in the microcavity upon application of a driving voltage. An electron emitter is arranged to emit electrons into the microcavity upon application of a control voltage. The electron emitter is an electron source having an insulator layer defining a tunneling region. The microplasma itself can serve as a second electrode necessary to energize the electron emitter. While a voltage comparable to previous microcavity plasma devices is still imposed across the microcavity plasma devices, control of the devices can be accomplished at high speeds and with a small voltage, e.g., about 5V to 30V in preferred embodiments.
|Original language||English (US)|
|U.S. patent number||8471471|
|State||Published - Jun 25 2013|