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Title: Cathode fall model and current-voltage characteristics of field emission driven direct current microplasmas

The post-breakdown characteristics of field emission driven microplasma are studied theoretically and numerically. A cathode fall model assuming a linearly varying electric field is used to obtain equations governing the operation of steady state field emission driven microplasmas. The results obtained from the model by solving these equations are compared with particle-in-cell with Monte Carlo collisions simulation results for parameters including the plasma potential, cathode fall thickness, ion number density in the cathode fall, and current density vs voltage curves. The model shows good overall agreement with the simulations but results in slightly overpredicted values for the plasma potential and the cathode fall thickness attributed to the assumed electric field profile. The current density vs voltage curves obtained show an arc region characterized by negative slope as well as an abnormal glow discharge characterized by a positive slope in gaps as small as 10 μm operating at atmospheric pressure. The model also retrieves the traditional macroscale current vs voltage theory in the absence of field emission.
Authors:
 [1]
  1. Department of Applied Mechanics, Indian Institute of Technology Madras, Chennai 600036 (India)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22218458
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Physics of Plasmas; Journal Volume: 20; Journal Issue: 11; Other Information: (c) 2013 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY; CATHODES; CHARGED-PARTICLE TRANSPORT; COMPARATIVE EVALUATIONS; CURRENT DENSITY; DIRECT CURRENT; ELECTRIC FIELDS; FIELD EMISSION; GLOW DISCHARGES; IONS; MONTE CARLO METHOD; NUMERICAL ANALYSIS; PLASMA; PLASMA POTENTIAL; PLASMA SIMULATION; STEADY-STATE CONDITIONS