I've just started an Associates level Biomedical Engineering Technology program and we have to design a power this semester in Multisim for my Electronics class and I also have to design on paper an X-Ray machine for my Rad Physics course. I would like to actually build a power supply that can produce volts that range from 1000 V to
60000 V. For starters, what type of chassis should I use?
Bakelite is actually not a good choise. The problem is that it "tracks". If you get some leakage across the surface (say because it's dirty) the surface turns to carbon. That carbon conducts slightly which draws more current which makes more carbon... It spirals downhill fast.
I'd use a metal chassis with ceramic standoffs.
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If you're gonna be changing the supply, you'll start with a small tank of insulating oil (like, 50 gallons of Diala AX or somesuch). Air is rotten insulation at 10 kV and above, so one either uses potting compound like a TV supply, or a vat of oil. Potting the circuit would make it hard to change, so... oil.
As to the rest, 1000 to 60,000 is a wide range; without knowing the current requirement, it might be a little motor-driven Van de Graaf or a switchmode power supply with Cockroft-Walton rectifiers.
This is definitely not a beginners project. 60kV will arc over enough distance to kill very easily. Real products that I have worked on use either teflon, vacuum, or about 1 foot of air as the insulator. Also much mechanical construction with just the right materials. So that when they do fail, which does happen occassionaly like when the output gets shorted, an arc doesn't jump through the controls and take you out with it. Your best bet would be to go and take a look inside some pre-existing boxes and get some service manuals and have a good long read. You will need more than 5 minutes on Google to get a safe result.
They are both full floaters, and you tie the negative lead of one to the positive lead of the other and ground that node. Then, you have a plus 30kV supply and a minus 30kV supply wrt ground. The x-ray tube is a full floater, so the +30kV and the -30kV fed into it yields 60kV at the target.
The last X-ray supply I made was two 90kV supplies set up in this exact manner, and it fed a Palladium target (about 20 grams) $900 X-ray tube at
180kV. It was all set into a steel cased lead lined box with oil, and an expansion tank, and the whole thing weighed over 150Lbs, and that was without the front end driver/control supply. It was not a flyback method driver either. I've got pictures here somewhere I can post in abse.
That is the supply/X-ray source that is under the conveyor at your local airport, looking at your carry on luggage.