We have set up a 60cm tube with a hole/fiber connector attached to allow injection of UV (337 nm.) light. When we operate this setup we see a narrow pulse consistent with its origin being emission of electrons from the inside wall opposite the light injection point. The width of the pulse is consistent with the time jitter on the laser (about 5ns.). We will soon use a better laser (0.6ns jitter) laser. This technique will allow the study of the maximum drift time (from the full tube radius) and comparisons of various gases, operating conditions, and wire diameters.
We have setup a 25cm tube to study pulse shapes with the eventual aim of defining "acceptable" tube characteristics for production QA tests. We have read out the pulses using a fast amplifier. The amplified output is captured on a digital scope from which we can then read out the digitized pulses into a PC. We plan to capture a set of pulses for further study.
We are having discussions with U. Washington concerning the construction of a prototype module on the timescale of a year. We are considering the option of fabricating the tubes at UTA and then integrating them into a module in Seattle (since they have carried out successful initial jigging work there).
The personnel involved in this work are: