A miniature x-ray source capable of producing broad spectrum x-ray emission over a wide range of x-ray energies. The miniature x-ray source comprises a compact vacuum tube assembly containing a cathode, an anode, a high voltage feedthru for delivering high voltage to the anode, a getter for maintaining high vacuum, a connection for an initial vacuum pump down and crimp-off, and a high voltage connection for attaching a compact high voltage cable to the high voltage feedthru. At least a portion of the vacuum tube wall is highly x-ray transparent and made, for example, from boron nitride. The compact size and potential for remote operation allows the x-ray source, for example, to be placed adjacent to a material sample undergoing analysis or in proximity to the region to be treated for medical applications.
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.