Abstract On-chip electron sources with the advantages of high emission current and density, high emission efficiency, low working voltage, and easy fabrication are highly desired for scaling down free electron-based devices and systems, especially for realizing those on a chip, but remain challenging. Here, such an on-chip electron source is reported simply based on electroformed silicon oxide between concentric graphene films on silicon oxide substrate. It is demonstrated that electron emission from an electron emitter can be driven by a low voltage about 11 V, and a high emission efficiency of 33.6%. An on-chip electron source with 36 × 36 emitter array in an area of 594 × 594 µm2 exhibits an emission current up to 1 mA at 38 V working voltage, corresponding to a high emission density of 283 mA cm−2. Electron emission from the sources is thought to be generated from horizontal tunneling diodes formed in electroformed silicon oxide. Combined advantages of high emission current and density, high emission efficiency, low working voltage, and easy fabrication make this on-chip electron sources promising in realizing miniature and on-chip free electron-based devices and systems.