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Title: Resonant- and avalanche-ionization amplification of laser-induced plasma in air

Amplification of laser-induced plasma in air is demonstrated utilizing resonant laser ionization and avalanche ionization. Molecular oxygen in air is ionized by a low-energy laser pulse employing (2 + 1) resonance-enhanced multi-photon ionization (REMPI) to generate seed electrons. Subsequent avalanche ionization of molecular oxygen and nitrogen significantly amplifies the laser-induced plasma. In this plasma-amplification effect, three-body attachments to molecular oxygen dominate the electron-generation and -loss processes, while either nitrogen or argon acts as the third body with low electron affinity. Contour maps of the electron density within the plasma obtained in O₂/N₂ and O₂/Ar gas mixtures are provided to show relative degrees of plasma amplification with respect to gas pressure and to verify that the seed electrons generated by O₂ 2 + 1 REMPI are selectively amplified by avalanche ionization of molecular nitrogen in a relatively low-pressure condition (≤100 Torr). Such plasma amplification occurring in air could be useful in aerospace applications at high altitude.
Authors:
;  [1] ; ;  [2] ;  [3]
  1. Department of Mechanical, Aerospace and Biomedical Engineering, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee 37996 (United States)
  2. Spectral Energies, LLC, 5100 Springfield St., Suite 301, Dayton, Ohio 45431 (United States)
  3. Air Force Research Laboratory, Aerospace Systems Directorate, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio 45433 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22305779
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Applied Physics; Journal Volume: 116; Journal Issue: 14; Other Information: (c) 2014 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Publisher:
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
75 CONDENSED MATTER PHYSICS, SUPERCONDUCTIVITY AND SUPERFLUIDITY; AIR; ALTITUDE; AMPLIFICATION; ELECTRON DENSITY; IONIZATION; LASER RADIATION; LOSSES; MOLECULAR IONS; MULTI-PHOTON PROCESSES; NITROGEN; OXYGEN; PLASMA; RESONANCE