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Van de Graaff Generator. 8. 9. 6. 5. 4. Schematic view. 7 . 3. 2. 1. A Van de Graaff generator is made by a belt of a flexible dielectric material, running over two rollers (wheels), one of which is surrounded by a hollow metal ball. 1. Power Supply that pulls off electrons.

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van de graaff generator
Van de Graaff Generator

8

9

6

5

4

Schematic view

7

3

2

1

  • A Van de Graaff generator is made by a belt of a flexible dielectric material, running over two rollers (wheels), one of which is surrounded by a hollow metal ball.

1. Power Supply that pulls off electrons.

2, 4. Rollers.

3. Positively charged belt (lost some electrons)

    • Metal comb that drops electrons from the ball onto the belt.
    • Metal ball that gives up electrons to the belt, then it is charged!
    • Negatively charged belt (gained some electrons from the ball).

8. Grounding wand, it can give or take electrons to make everything even again.

    • Discharge: A spark, a flow of electrons through the air.
  • The bigger the ball, and farther from the ground it is lets you build more charge up on it.

Document Title/Description

history
History
  • The fundamental idea of friction machine as high voltage supply traces back to 17th Century.
  • Generator invented to supply the high energy needed for early particle accelerators.
  • The first model was demonstrated in October 1929, using a silk ribbon bought at a five and dime store as the charge transport belt.
  • Originally used as a research tool in early atom-smashing and high energy X-ray experiments.

1931, Robert J. Van de Graaff (left) poses with his electrostatic generator and Karl T. Compton, MIT president

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recent developments
Recent Developments
  • Tandem Van de Graaffaccelerator
    • Contains one or more Van de Graaff generators.
    • Negatively charged ions are accelerated through a potential difference then stripped of electrons and accelerated again.
  • Pelletron
    • Belt is replaced by a chain of short conductive rods connected by insulating links.
    • Air-ionizing electrodes are replaced by a grounded roller and inductive charging electrode.
    • Can be operated at much higher velocity than a belt, so both the voltage and currents attainable are higher than a conventional Van de Graaff machine.

The largest VDG generator, on display at the Boston Museum of Science

Document Title/Description