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Plasma Science, IEEE Transactions on

Issue 5 • Date Oct. 1998

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Displaying Results 1 - 25 of 25
  • Guest Editorial

    Page(s): 1366 - 1367
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    Freely Available from IEEE
  • Fast, zero-dimensional simulation of radio frequency glow discharges for quick estimates of fluorine concentrations

    Page(s): 1583 - 1585
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    A zero-dimensional model quickly estimates changes in species concentrations in CF4 radio frequency glow discharges. The code simulated experimental conditions of 100 mtorr and 5-20 W discharges. The results show that the simple model predicts actinometry results if the most accurate electron energy distribution function is used View full abstract»

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  • Pulsed wire discharge for nanosize powder synthesis

    Page(s): 1498 - 1501
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    The pulsed wire discharge, as one of the well-developed pulsed power technologies, has been successfully applied to nanosize powder production. In the demonstration experiments, the discharge was carried out with the peak current of ~10 kA, the pulse length of ~20 μs, and the pulse energy of ~80 J. Nanosize powders of metals (Al, Fe, Cu, Mo, and Pb), metal oxides (Al2O3, TiO2, Fe 2O3, NiO, ZrO2, SnO2, and PbO), and metal nitrides (TiN, ZrN, Ta2N) have been synthesized by pulsed discharge of metal wires in argon, oxygen, or nitrogen. The typical powder production rate was ~5 mg/pulse. The results of surface-area measurement have given the average powder sizes in the range of 20~70 nm, depending on the material of the powder View full abstract»

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  • Electron plasma waves generation in suddenly created isotropic plasma

    Page(s): 1514 - 1519
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    Electron plasma waves excitation in suddenly created isotropic plasma as a result of weak nonlinear interaction of linearly polarized plane electromagnetic (EM) wave and electrons has been considered. By the use of standard perturbation method the problem is solved in closed form for the case of a simple harmonic source EM wave. The appearance of the second harmonic and time independent modes have been demonstrated. The efficiency of excitation of these modes is possible to control by varying the frequency of the source wave View full abstract»

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  • Nonlinear optical techniques for plasma diagnostics

    Page(s): 1502 - 1513
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    The application of various nonlinear optical laser spectroscopic techniques to plasma diagnostics are reported. The techniques discussed in this paper are two-photon laser induced fluorescence spectroscopy, double-resonant four-wave mixing, coherent anti-Stokes Raman-scattering (CARS), and a combination of emission spectroscopy and CARS. They are applied to measurements of atomic hydrogen densities, molecular temperature, chemical composition, electric field distributions, and vibrational population distribution. The basic principles are described and important aspects of the methods are discussed in context with application to various kinds of discharges at low and elevated pressures View full abstract»

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  • Development of a barium-free high-temperature cesium Tacitron

    Page(s): 1403 - 1409
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    A barium-free, high-temperature, cesium Tacitron has been developed using a platinum, hollow cathode, emitter. The hollow cathode emitter used in our investigation is designed to enhance the current emission of a Tacitron cathode without the use of barium in the switch. In a barium-cesium Tacitron, the barium is known to cover the surface of a molybdenum emitter lowering its work function. The barium however limits the lifetime of the Tacitron, unless sophisticated seal technology is used in the manufacture of the Tacitron. The hollow cathode emitter was operated at current densities from 2.5 A/cm2 up to 7.0 A/cm2. Continuous operation of the Tacitron was demonstrated at 100-150 V and repetition rates of up to 5.8 kHz with measured voltage drops of 3.5-9.0 V. The results of the experimental characterization are compared to the computer model, and the applicability of this unique Tacitron design is discussed View full abstract»

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  • A method to measure electric field strengths in an argon glow discharge plasma using laser spectroscopy

    Page(s): 1556 - 1561
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    A method for electric field measurement based on laser spectroscopy of argon atoms has been developed and calibrated. Measurements were made using both laser optogalvanic spectroscopy and laser-induced fluorescence spectroscopy. Measurements using several different transitions in argon were carried out, and it was found that the 4s→7f and 4s→8f transitions were the most suitable for measurements in the sheath region of glow discharges. The lower limit for electric field measurements was estimated to be 500 V/cm. A minimal pressure of about 100 mtorr was required to detect optogalvanic signals and about 1 torr was required for the fluorescence signals to be detectable. These detection limits make this method applicable for measurement of sheath electric fields for a wide range of discharge conditions View full abstract»

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  • Mathematical analysis of positive pulsed corona discharge process employed for removal of nitrogen oxides

    Page(s): 1566 - 1574
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    A mathematical model was proposed to describe the behaviour of the removal of nitrogen oxides (NOx) in a positive pulsed corona discharge reactor. The proposed model takes into account radical production at each pulsing and subsequent radical utilization for NOx removal. The production efficiencies of radicals such as O, OH, H, and N were derived by considering direct electron impact on dissociation of gaseous molecules, followed by excitation transfer reactions of excited oxygen atoms. The production efficiencies of those species were used for the model calculations. The proposed model could adequately predict the experimental data. Of the active species present, the ozone (O3) produced by the reaction of O radical with oxygen was found to play the crucial role in oxidation of NO to NO2 , both theoretically and experimentally View full abstract»

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  • Capacitors

    Page(s): 1368 - 1392
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    Over the last decade, significant increases in capacitor performance, especially in reliability and energy/power densities, have been achieved for energy discharge applications in plasma science and fusion research applications through a combination of advanced manufacturing techniques, new materials, and diagnostic methodologies to provide requisite lifecycle performance for high energy pulse applications. Recent innovations in analysis of aging are introduced for predicting component performance and fault tolerance, especially relevant for very high energy storage applications necessary for next generation simulators, electrically energized fusion research machines, and advanced high power electronics for commercial, industrial, and military applications. Included in this study will be developments in capacitor technologies for electronics filtering and resonant energy transfer applications, as well as multisecond energy reservoir applications for uninterruptible power sources and the like. Next generation power electronics, driven by advances in solid state switching technologies, will require reduced capacitor dissipation factor by 1/3 to 1/10 at the same cost, particularly for AC applications. In addition, higher power electronics will require robust high frequency mica capacitor technology for >300°C operation, up to 5 kV. The increasing expansion of the motor drive and industrial switched mode power supply (SMPS) market will be driven in cost by the availability of electrolytic capacitors of 750-850 Vdc ratings, at 450 Vdc cost and size. New formation processes and electrolytes are anticipated to be needed to achieve these extended performance levels. At higher frequencies, advanced power electronics drives the need for lower equivalent series resistance (ESR)≪0.1% to 100 MHz, multimicrofarad value solid tantalum capacitors, having fail-safe surface mount configurations. Emerging power electronics applications in the millisecond and longer time are projected to have a broad application need for electrochemical chemical double layer capacitors, especially for compact sizes as this technology has the potential of achieving energy densities of many 20 kJ/kg for discharge times of tens of seconds. The prismatic power conditioning system, designed to be compliant with the available volume and surfaces into which it is to be placed, is described in some detail. It permits flexibility for the design engineer to optimize the design without having to allocate a specific space for the power conditioning system or subcomponents. Such prismatic geometry power and power conditioning systems are becoming commercially feasible In the low power consumer and industrial regime because of dramatic advances in multichip module switching, energy storage, and planarized interconnections. This work builds on assessing the applicability of these technologies to the megawatt-class average power, power electronics regime. Higher power density prismatic power electronics enables abroad range of applications in the commercial arena in areas such as motor drives, inverters, power quality systems, and mobile power systems View full abstract»

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  • Voltage and current characteristics of pulsed hollow cathode discharges in hydrogen

    Page(s): 1492 - 1497
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    Volt-ampere characteristics of a hollow-cathode, hollow-anode discharge in hydrogen were measured by using a very fast di/dt probe. The large bandwidth of the probe enabled us to observe fast oscillations occurring at the onset of the current pulse and also at the moment of its quenching. Three different modes of operation are observed, the first with smooth voltage and current waveforms. The second mode occurs for voltages higher than 1500 V and is characterized by strong oscillations and the occurrence of current quenching. The third, mode occurs with a sharp transition and in it the current rises more rapidly to a much higher maximum value, while the oscillations are less pronounced. This mode has identical characteristics with the superdense glow mode of pseudospark discharges. At the point of transition a sudden change in the frequency of oscillations, of the impedance, and of the maximum transmitted power occur. Current quenching is observed in the second and in the third mode. The development of the superdense glow changes the character of the waveforms and current quenching while the mechanism leading to the superdense glow may be associated with the available voltage View full abstract»

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  • Effects of plasma surface layers on the efficiency of plasma flow switching

    Page(s): 1420 - 1436
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    The plasma flow switch is a possible fast opening-switch for Z-pinches on inductive-store pulsed-power machines. This paper presents results of two-dimensional, radiation-magnetohydrodynamic models for a well-characterized plasma flow switch operating into a load region at current levels of 5-6 MA. The calculations predict that motion of the switch plasma along coaxial electrodes leads to the formation along the inner electrode of a boundary layer that can interfere with switching. The simulations describe the effect of the boundary layer on switching and show that it may be removed by means of a boundary-layer trap. Predictive calculations were used to eliminate the effects of the boundary layer and led to an improvement in the switch's performance. Comparison with experiments lends credence to the model View full abstract»

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  • Finite volume solution of the relativistic Boltzmann equation for electron avalanche studies

    Page(s): 1575 - 1582
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    The Boltzmann equation for a population of relativistic electrons in a constant external electric field in air is solved numerically in order to determine parameters of the resulting runaway electron beam. The numerical solution takes advantage of algorithms from computational fluid dynamics. The work revises the results from the original work where the numerical solution was found to be unstable View full abstract»

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  • A proposed 4 GHz, 60 kW transit-time oscillator operating at 18 kV beam voltage

    Page(s): 1520 - 1525
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    A high-power transit-time oscillator operating at 4.0 GHz in the cylindrical-cavity TM010 mode is proposed. Without requiring an externally applied magnetic field, the oscillator comprises a diode electron gun and a cylindrical cavity that are combined into a single unit that makes for a compact, lightweight device. The transit-time effect, which underlies the operation principle of the oscillator, is examined through a small-signal analysis from which a relation embodying the cavity length, resonant frequency, and cathode voltage is derived. Proper DC voltages of 18 kV are applied to the diode gun which runs in the space-charge-limited regime and produces a 27 A-current hollow electron beam. Output power is extracted axially from the system by aperture coupling the cavity to an external waveguide where outgoing travelling waves with 60 kW peak power are observed by means of 2.5 D particle-in-cell computer simulations View full abstract»

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  • Electron beam extraction from a broad-beam vacuum-arc metal plasma source

    Page(s): 1562 - 1565
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    We describe experiments demonstrating the formation of a high current electron beam from a vacuum arc plasma. A preexisting vacuum arc ion source was used, with the extraction voltage reversed in polarity so as to form an electron beam rather than an ion beam; no other changes were required. The beam formed was of energy up to 33 keV, beam current up to 70 A, beam diameter about 10 cm, pulse width 500 μs, and energy density up to 25 J/cm2. This kind of source can be used for material surface modification View full abstract»

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  • Study of repetitive plasma opening switch generator technology

    Page(s): 1410 - 1419
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    Repetitive plasma opening switch (POS) research for X-ray and electron beam generators for commercial applications is reviewed. This research was started on the RS-20 generator in 1991 with submicrosecond conduction times, 100 kA currents, and MV voltages. In the experiments wall-plug to electron beam production efficiency was increased from 10-50%. Maximum voltage obtained at POS was 3 MV starting from 0.8 MV at the Marx generator. POS operation was improved using an applied external magnetic field for the opening phase. Diode current and total generator efficiency were increased by combining the POS and diode system in one technology unit. For the opening phase of the high-impedance, repetitive POS, a set of conditions based on early POS experiments in the Kurchatov Institute were proposed. Repetitive POS generators have obtained peak X-ray dose rates of 1 MGy/s and electron dose rates of 10 GGy/s. This may be important for applications as pulsed irradiation may cause more efficient sterilization at lower doses. An X-ray generator based on repetitive POS technology at 5 MV and 200 kW in the electron beam is proposed View full abstract»

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  • High power, fast, microwave components based on beam generated plasmas

    Page(s): 1543 - 1555
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    It is shown that the agile mirror plasma, under development as a device to simply and cheaply give electronic steering to microwave beams, also has application as a fast, electronically controlled, high power reflector, or phase shifter. In a radar system, this can lead to such applications as pulse to pulse polarization agility and electronic control of antenna gain, as well as to innovative approaches to high power millimeter wave circulators. The basic theory of the enhanced glow plasma is also developed View full abstract»

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  • High voltage pulses for high impedance loads using explosive formed fuses

    Page(s): 1437 - 1443
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    Explosive formed fuses (EFFs) use conducting elements that are deformed by explosive pressure (typically, against dielectric dies). This causes the fuse geometry to change, so that the conducting element cross section decreases. This enables a higher ratio of current conduction to current interrupt time than for normal fuses, and it enables more control of when current interruption occurs. In combination with a suitable output closing switch, EFF's can be used to obtain several hundred kilovolt voltage pulses from inductive stores to drive several ohm loads. With proper choices of inductive store, EFF geometry and material, and output closing switch features, such a voltage pulse can be approximately flat topped for microsecond duration and have a small fraction of microsecond risetime. We present theoretical analysis and circuit simulations which illustrate this, using scaled empirical EFF parameters for inductive stores in the 1 weber flux, several hundred nanohenry range. The circuit simulations were done using MicroCap-IV, with user defined elements. These simulations were done with static inductive stores and with explosive magnetic flux compression generators driving inductive stores View full abstract»

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  • Modeling of impedance collapse in high-voltage diodes

    Page(s): 1485 - 1491
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    Electron-beam diodes driven by fast-rising, high-voltage pulses often operate with cold cathodes for which the presence of a plasma adjacent to the cathode surface is essential to obtain adequate electron emission. A consequence of such surface plasma, however, is closure of the interelectrode gap by plasma motion. Resistive heating of the plasma competes with work performed in expanding the plasma and heat transfer to the cold-cathode boundary. The resulting closure speed is calculated, using an MHD code, and found to agree well with results of experiments using organic-cloth cathodes at 35 kV. Computed plasma speeds are typically 8-12 km/s, and are relatively insensitive to the applied voltage. Gap closure due to the plasma motion calculated numerically corresponds to estimates based on impedance collapse in the experiments View full abstract»

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  • Three-dimensional structures of MHD flow in a disk generator

    Page(s): 1526 - 1531
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    Three-dimensional nonuniform plasmas and boundary layers have been studied numerically under an MHD interaction. The nonuniform plasma of “streamer” owing to weak ionization of seed material has a spiral structure in the r-θ plane, and the plasma becomes almost uniform between the walls in the r-z plane. This structure is almost the same as that in our previous paper (1997), where the gas (heavy particle) properties are assumed to be invariant and steady. In addition to the streamer, the nonuniform plasma of “domain” owing to weak ionization of noble gas is revealed. The domain has the structure perpendicular to the streamer. In a strong MHD interaction case, the static pressure considerably increases in the upstream region of a generation channel, and the pseudo-shock waves appear in the generator, but the plasma is almost uniform along the θ direction. The boundary layer in the strong MHD interaction is considerably thick, and in the broad region near the wall the Hall current flows reversely. In the weak MHD interaction case, the plasma forms a nonuniform structure along the θ direction, and the Hall current does not always flow in the opposite direction even on the insulator wall since the azimuthal electric field is not zero View full abstract»

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  • Pulsed power corona discharges for air pollution control

    Page(s): 1476 - 1484
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    Successful introduction of pulsed corona for industrial purposes very much depends on the reliability of high-voltage and pulsed power technology and on the efficiency of energy transfer. In addition, it is of the utmost importance that adequate electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) is achieved between the high-voltage pulse source and the surrounding equipment. Pulsed corona is generated in a pilot unit that produces narrow 50 MW pulses at 1000 pps (net average corona power 1.5 kW). The pilot unit can run continuously for use in industrial applications such as cleaning of gases (100 m3/h) containing NO or volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or fluids (e.g., waste water). Simultaneous removal of NO and ethylene to obtain clean CO2 from the exhaust of a combustion engine was tested at an industrial site. Various chemical processes, such as removal of toluene or styrene from an airflow are tested in the laboratory. We developed a model to analyze the conversion of these pollutants. To examine the discharges in the reactor we use current, voltage, and E-field sensors as well as a fast charge-coupled device (CCD) camera. Detailed energy input measurements are compared with CCD movies to investigate the efficiency of different streamer phases. EMC techniques incorporated in the pilot unit are based on the successful concept of constructing a low transfer impedance between common mode currents induced by pulsed power and differential mode voltages in signal lines and external main lines View full abstract»

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  • High-power, repetitive-stacked Blumlein pulsers commutated by a single switching element

    Page(s): 1463 - 1475
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    The stacked Blumlein pulse generators developed at the University of Texas at Dallas consist of several triaxial Blumleins stacked in series at one end. The lines are charged in parallel and synchronously commutated with a single switching element at the other end, In this may, relatively low charging voltages are multiplied to give a higher desired voltage across an arbitrary load. Extensive characterization of the stacked Blumlein pulsers indicates that these devices are capable of producing high-power pulses with rise times and repetition rates in the range of 0.3-50 ns and 1-300 Hz, respectively, using a conventional thyratron, spark gap, or photoconductive switch. This paper presents the progress in the development and use of these novel pulsers. Recent adaptation of the design has enabled the stacked Blumlein to produce 50-70 MW nanosecond pulses with risetimes on the order of 200-300 ps into nominally matched loads. The device has a compact line geometry and is commutated by a single photoconductive switch triggered by a low power laser diode View full abstract»

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  • Longevity of optically activated, high gain GaAs photoconductive semiconductor switches

    Page(s): 1393 - 1402
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    The longevity of high gain GaAs photoconductive semiconductor switches (PCSSs) has been extended to well over ten million pulses by reducing the density of carriers at the semiconductor to metal interface. This was achieved by reducing the density in the vertical and lateral directions. The latter was achieved by varying the spatial distribution of the trigger light thereby widening the current filaments that are characteristic of the high gain switches. We reduced the carrier density in the vertical direction by using ion implantation. These results were obtained for currents of about 10 A, current duration of 3.5 ns, and switched voltage of ~2 kV. At currents of ~70 A, the switches last for 0.6 million pulses. In order to improve the performance at high currents, new processes such as deep diffusion and epitaxial growth of contacts are being pursued. To guide this effort we recorded open shutter, infra-red images, and time-resolved Schlieren images of the current filaments, which form during high gain switching. We measured, under varying conditions, a carrier (electrons or holes) density that ranges from 3×1017 cm-3 to 6×1018 cm-3 View full abstract»

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  • Caballero: a high current flux compressor system for 100 MJ solid liner experiments

    Page(s): 1454 - 1462
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    Pulse power systems delivering in excess of 100 MJ represent one of the next major challenges to the community. While laboratory pulse power systems in this energy range are feasible, they represent very substantial investments of both time and resources. Prudence requires that fundamental proof of principle for the contemplated application be established before such massive resources are committed. Explosive pulse power systems using magnetic flux compression provide a direct path to such demonstrations. Furthermore, as energy requirements grow, they may represent the only affordable source of ultra-high energy environments. In this paper we report the results of an experimental test of a first generation disk generator system. Individual disk segments have been tested with framing camera diagnostics to evaluate overall performance dynamics and material, and fabrication failure points. In general no bulk failures were observed in several shots and the critical weld joints were seen to maintain integrity for at least 4 μs after arrival of the detonation front. Single module pulse power experiments have been conducted at reduced initial current (1.5-2.0 MA) with a fixed inductance load of 0.22 nH View full abstract»

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  • Design and testing of a 5 MW battery-based inductive power supply

    Page(s): 1444 - 1453
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    A 5 MW battery-based inductive power supply (IFS) was designed and tested. The battery consisted of 636 low-resistance, sealed, lead-acid batteries organized in strings that are connected to busbars via small-size contactors. A vacuum breaker serves as a closing switch, while an explosively driven opening switch interrupts the circuit, transferring the coil current to the load. In case of load malfunction, the energy stored in the coil is dumped into a dissipative load. The systems for control and measurement are decoupled from the high-current carrying conductors. In this paper, optimization of the battery-coil matching is discussed. The current sharing between the strings is analyzed. IFS parasitic inductance for different arrangements was calculated and reduced by careful design to 4 μH. PSpice simulations of the IFS accounting for nonlinearity in the components are presented. Main components, such as batteries, contactors, and protective equipment were tested under high current conditions. The IFS was evaluated both with a resistive and an electro-thermal load with stored energy up to 0.5 MJ. Power amplification of 100 was obtained. It was found that the experimental results agree closely with calculations, and the IFS performs according to the design specifications. Methods of developing a more compact IFS using advanced battery technology are analyzed View full abstract»

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  • Measurements and simulations of VUV emissions from plasma flat panel display pixel microdischarges

    Page(s): 1532 - 1542
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    This paper reports on measurements of the principal vacuum ultra-violet emission lines from micro discharges operating with helium/xenon gas mixture used in full color plasma driven flat panel display pixels. The principal emission lines observed are the 147 and 129 nm lines from atomic xenon transitions and the relatively broad emissions from xenon dimers centered near 173 nm. We report on the changing intensities of these lines with variation in xenon concentration in the pixel gas mixtures, which affect the overall luminous efficiency of the display. A one-dimensional computer model has been used to simulate the discharge evolution. The model tracks the populations of twelve different representative quantum energy levels of the helium and xenon atoms, as well as the production and decay of the xenon dimers. The atomic physics description is sufficiently detailed to allow prediction of the relative intensities of the dominant emission lines. We find that model predicted intensities for xenon atomic and dimer emission lines agree well with experimental measurements View full abstract»

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Aims & Scope

IEEE Transactions on Plasma Sciences focuses on plasma science and engineering, including: magnetofluid dynamics and thermionics; plasma dynamics; gaseous electronics and arc technology.

 

 

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Meet Our Editors

Editor-in-Chief
Steven J. Gitomer, Ph.D.
Senior Scientist, US Civilian Research & Development Foundation
Guest Scientist, Los Alamos National Laboratory
1428 Miracerros Loop South
Santa Fe, NM  87505  87505  USA
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