Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology A, Vol.12, No.5, 2911-2916, 1994
Influence of the Filament Potential Wave-Form on the Sensitivity of Glass-Envelope Bayard-Alpert Gauges
Nonlinearities of approximately 10%-15% in the sensitivity of glass envelope Bayard-Alpert gages (BA gages) have been observed in the pressure range 10(-7)-10(-2) Pa. These nonlinearities were studied in modified BA gage tubes with platinum coatings on their inner glass surfaces by measuring the equilibrium potential of the platinum coating as a function of pressure. The sensitivities of the gage systems (gage tube plus controller) were found to depend on the inner surface potential, and this potential was found to depend on pressure and on the details of the filament potential waveform provided by the gage controller. It was found that the nonlinearities could be minimized by holding the inner surface to a fixed direct-current (dc) potential, by modifying the alternating-current filament potential wave form, or by using a controller that provides a noise-free dc filament-heating current.