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Properties of Hybrid Water/Gas DC Arc Plasma Torch

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6 Author(s)

A new type of plasma torch with combined stabilization of electric arc by water vortex and gas flow was investigated. This hybrid water/gas stabilization offers the possibility of adjusting plasma jet parameters within a wide range from high-enthalpy low-density plasmas typical for liquid stabilized torches to lower enthalpy higher density plasmas generated in gas stabilized torches. The torch was operated at an arc power from 22 to 130 kW with an exit centerline plasma velocity from 2 to 6.5 km/s and a plasma temperature from 14 000 K to 22 000 K. Moreover, gas flow in the cathode part protects a cathode tip and thus a consumable carbon cathode used in water torches could be replaced by a fixed tungsten cathode. The characteristics of the electric arc with combined gas/water stabilization were measured and the effect of gas properties and flow rate on plasma properties and gas-dynamic flow characteristics of the plasma jet were studied for argon, and mixtures of argon with hydrogen and nitrogen

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Plasma Science  (Volume:34 ,  Issue: 4 )