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electron tube, device consisting of a sealed enclosure in which electrons flow between electrodes separated either by a vacuum (in a vacuum tube) or by an ionized gas at low pressure (in a gas tube). The two principal electrodes of an electron tube are the cathode and the anode or plate. The simplest vacuum tube, the diode, has only those two electrodes. When the cathode is heated, it emits a cloud of electrons, which are attracted by the positive electric polarity of the anode and constitute the current through the tube. If the cathode is charged positively with respect to the anode, the electrons are drawn back to the cathode. However, the anode is not capable of emitting electrons, so no current can exist; thus the diode acts as a rectifier, i.e., it allows current to flow in only one direction. In the vacuum triode a third electrode, the grid, usually made of a fine wire mesh or similar material, is placed between the cathode and anode. Small voltage fluctuations, or signals, applied to the grid can result in large fluctuations in the current between the cathode and the anode. Thus the triode can act as a signal amplifier, producing output signals some 20 times greater than input. For even greater amplification, additional grids can be added. Tetrodes, with 2 grids, produce output signals about 600 times greater than input, and pentodes, with 3 grids, 1,500 times. X-ray tubes maintain a high voltage between a cathode and an anode. This enables electrons from the cathode to strike the anode at velocities high enough to produce X rays. A cathode-ray tube can produce electron beams that strike a screen to produce pictures, as in some oscilloscopes and older television displays. Gas tubes behave similarly to vacuum tubes but are designed to handle larger currents or to produce luminous discharges. In some gas tubes the cathode is not designed as an electron emitter; conduction occurs when a voltage sufficient to ionize the gas exists between the anode and the cathode. In these cases the ions and electrons formed from the gas molecules constitute the current. Electron tubes have been replaced by solid-state devices, such as transistors, for most applications. However they are still used in high-power transmitters, specialty audio equipment, and some oscilloscopes. A klystron is a special kind of vacuum tube that is a powerful microwave amplifier; it is used to generate signals for radar and television stations.
a body having the form of a right prism or right cylinder whose height (thickness) is small compared to the size of the base. Plates are classified according to the shape of the base as rectangular, circular, elliptical, and so on. The plane that divides the thickness of the plate in half is called the medial plane.
Plates are widely used in engineering as elements of many structures and buildings, for example, in walls, floors, ceilings, foundations, bridges, and hydraulic structures. They are elements of ship hulls, aircraft, reservoirs, and many machines and appliances. In acoustics they are used as radiators and receivers of sound and as screens in sound fields.
According to the character of the loads acting on the plate, a distinction is made between plates subject to flexure under transverse loads and plates subject to tension and compression under loads acting in the medial plane.
Flexural deformation causes the points of a plate to be displaced, or deflected, perpendicularly with respect to the medial plane. The surface formed by the points of the medial plane after deformation is called the medial surface. According to the nature of the deformation of the medial surface upon bending, the following types are distinguished: plates that are rigid or experience a small deflection of not more than one-fifth of the thickness; flexible plates, where the deflection is from one-fifth to five times the thickness; and highly flexible plates, or membranes, where the deflection is more than five times the thickness.
In rigid plates the medial layer can without appreciable error be regarded as neutral—that is, as free from tension-compression stresses. Calculations for rigid plates as a rule make use of the hypothesis of straight normals, according to which any straight line that before deformation is normal to the medial plane remains after deformation straight and normal to the medial surface; the length of a fiber in the direction of the thickness of the plate is regarded as unchanged.
In the case of flexible plates in calculations within the limits of elasticity, not only purely bending stresses must be considered but also stresses that are uniformly distributed over the thickness of the plate. The latter are called either membrane stresses or stresses in the medial surface. In highly flexible plates, or membranes, studies of elastic deformations may neglect the flexural stresses proper as compared to the stresses in the medial surface.
When plates are under a load that acts in the medial plane, the stresses are distributed uniformly over the thickness—that is, the plates are under conditions that are more advantageous than in the case of a transverse load. Buckling of the plate, however, is possible in this case, and the plate usually has to be reinforced by a network of stiffeners.
Dynamic problems—the calculation of natural and forced vibrations on plates—are of great importance.
A. S. VOL’MIR
Plates are of interest as oscillatory systems in acoustics. Plates are classified as thin and thick, depending on their thickness compared with the length of the elastic waves in their interior. Transverse (bending) vibrations and longitudinal (extensional) vibrations are possible in thin plates; in the latter case, the displacements are oriented in the plane of the plate. Bending in thin plates is not accompanied by tension of the middle plane; bending and extensional vibrations can therefore exist independently of each other. The situation is different in thick plates. The vibrations of such plates can be represented as a set of longitudinal and shear waves that propagate within the plate and are reflected at its two sides.
In accordance with the two types of oscillations, in a hypothetical infinite plate there can propagate transverse and longitudinal waves. For transverse (flexural) waves, a plate is a system exhibiting dispersion: waves of different wavelengths propagate in the plate with different speeds. The speed of longitudinal waves in a thin plate is independent of the wavelength. Plates of limited size have discrete sets of natural frequencies. To each natural frequency there corresponds a natural vibration form, which can be pictorially represented by a distribution of nodal lines, where the displacements during the vibration process are equal to zero. The natural frequencies and forms of the vibrations depend on the size and shape of the plate and on the conditions of support of the plate’s edges. A vibrating plate is itself a source of vibrations in the medium in which it is located. The radiation efficiency of a plate depends on the elastic properties and density of the plate material and on the properties of the medium in which the plate is located.
REFERENCESBubnov, I. G. Trudy po teorii plastin. Moscow, 1953.
Timoshenko, S. P. Plastinki i obolochki, Moscow-Leningrad, 1948. (Translated from English.)
Vol’mir, A. S. Gibkie plastinki i obolochki. Moscow, 1956.
Vol’mir, A. S. Nelineinaia dinamika plastinok i obolochek. Moscow, 1972.
Strutt, J. (Lord Rayleigh). Teoriia zvuka, 2nd ed., vol. 1. Moscow, 1955. (Translated from English.)
Skudrzyk, E. Osnovy akustiki, vol. 2. Moscow, 1959. (Translated from German.)
What does it mean when you dream about a plate?
A plate contains nourishment, so dreaming about a plate can refer metaphorically to how we nourish our emotional life. An empty plate can thus mean that our needs are not being fulfilled. If the plate is overly full, it could be alluding to the expression about being overly busy, having a “full plate.”