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Investigations of carbide electrodes in high-current pseudospark switches

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6 Author(s)
Schwandner, A. ; Phys. Dept., Erlangen-Nurnberg Univ., Germany ; Gortler, A. ; Christiansen, J. ; Frank, K.
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Semiconducting carbides, SiC and BC, were tested as electrode material in pseudospark switches. Typical parameters of the test circuit were a charging voltage of 20 kV, a peak current up to 120 kA and a pulse length of 5 μs (weakly damped sinusoidal pulse shape). In comparison to metal electrodes no differences in the electrical signals were detected. Optical investigations with a fast shutter assumed that the discharge starts on the axis. At later times the discharge plasma is homogeneously distributed over the total carbide surfaces of the electrodes. No cathode spots were observed. The erosion rate is low in comparison to molybdenum electrodes. The lifetime of the switch is enlarged as first tests show, but the holdoff voltage is limited due to field enhancement at the triple point metal, carbide, and gas

Published in:

Discharges and Electrical Insulation in Vacuum, 1996. Proceedings. ISDEIV., XVIIth International Symposium on  (Volume:2 )

Date of Conference:

21-26 Jul 1996