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Reformulation of Laframboise' Probe Theory in Cylindrical Geometry and the Absence of an Ion Saturation Current

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1 Author(s)
Robertson, S. ; Dept. of Phys., Univ. of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, CO, USA

Laframboise' probe theory in the cylindrical case has been reformulated so that solutions may be obtained easily in a mathematical spreadsheet. Sheath potential profiles and probe currents are given for several cases including probes with radii that are sufficiently large for a potential barrier that results in electron current collection less than that given by the orbit-motion-limited theory. For probes with radii in the range of 1-50 Debye lengths and for electron-to-ion temperature ratios of 1 and 10, the electron current at a fixed bias potential is found to be dependent upon the electron-to-ion temperature ratio because the ions affect the height of the potential barriers. The ion current is found as a function of voltage for probes with radii of 3, 10, and 50 Debye lengths and for electron-to-ion temperature ratios of 1 and 10. The normalized ion current is of the same order as the Bohm current, but the probe characteristics show no ??ion saturation current?? and show a dependence upon both the probe radius and the temperature ratio.

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Plasma Science, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:38 ,  Issue: 4 )