A New Mass Spectrometer with Improved Focusing Properties

Phys. Rev. 53, 521 – Published 1 April 1938
Walker Bleakney and John A. Hipple, Jr.


The use of crossed electric and magnetic fields for a mass spectrometer is discussed. It is shown that this arrangement has perfect focusing properties; the focusing depends only on the me of the ion selected, and not on the velocity or direction of the charged particles entering the analyzer. The projection of the path in the plane perpendicular to the magnetic field is a trochoid. The theory necessary for the design of the apparatus is developed in some detail. A method of drawing the trochoids is described as well as a chart which is a great help in rapidly correlating the many variables. It is shown that there are two types of path to be considered, the curtate and the prolate. The former was employed in the first model constructed and gave encouraging results in spite of some structural difficulties encountered. The second apparatus was the prolate type and worked exceptionally well. Some typical mass spectra are shown. It was found that a distribution in energy amounting to 50 percent of the potential accelerating the ions had no effect on the resolution.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRev.53.521

  • Received 7 February 1938
  • Published in the issue dated April 1938

© 1938 The American Physical Society

Authors & Affiliations

Walker Bleakney and John A. Hipple, Jr.

  • Palmer Physical Laboratory, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey

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