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B Problem understanding Paul traps

  1. Apr 26, 2017 #1
    Paul traps have been confusing me a lot recently. So sorry if there are too many questions

    • I know that paul traps confine ions with the help of rapidly switching quadruple electric fields, I've heard that paul traps actually force the particle to move to the center where the electric field is zero. But I see no reason behind this. Wouldn't the particle just oscillate about a mean position? Why would they drift to the center?

    • For paul traps to work, the electric fields must switch faster than of which the particle reaches the wall. So, does any frequency above this value work fine? Just to make my point clear, would a paul trap operating at 1 Thz work just as well as a one at 1 or 2 Mhz?

    • If my assumption above is accurate, then can a paul trap trap more than one type of species? Say electrons and protons? I understand that in order to confine electrons, we would need the switching of electric fields to be much higher than that needed to confine ions.

    • Then can't we confine plasmas just as well? Debye shielding would hardly be a problem as the particles lack time for screening to occur?
  2. jcsd
  3. May 1, 2017 #2
    Thanks for the thread! This is an automated courtesy bump. Sorry you aren't generating responses at the moment. Do you have any further information, come to any new conclusions or is it possible to reword the post? The more details the better.
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