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Title: Generation of anomalously energetic suprathermal electrons by an electron beam interacting with a nonuniform plasma

Generation of anomalously energetic suprathermal electrons was observed in simulation of a high-voltage dc discharge with electron emission from the cathode. An electron beam produced by the emission interacts with the nonuniform plasma in the discharge via a two-stream instability. The energy transfer from the beam to the plasma electrons is ensured by the plasma nonuniformity. The electron beam excites plasma waves whose wavelength and phase speed gradually decrease towards anode. The waves with short wavelength near the anode accelerate plasma bulk electrons to suprathermal energies. The sheath near the anode reflects some of the accelerated electrons back into the plasma. These electrons travel through the plasma, reflect near the cathode, and enter the accelerating area again but with a higher energy than before. Such particles are accelerated to energies much higher than after the first acceleration. This mechanism plays a role in explaining earlier experimental observations of energetic suprathermal electrons in similar discharges.
Authors:
 [1] ;  [2] ; ;  [3]
  1. University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta T6G 2E1 (Canada)
  2. Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey 08543 (United States)
  3. Tokyo Electron America, Austin, Texas 78741 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22489971
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Physics of Plasmas; Journal Volume: 22; Journal Issue: 12; Other Information: (c) 2015 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; ACCELERATION; ANODES; CATHODES; COMPUTERIZED SIMULATION; ELECTRIC POTENTIAL; ELECTRON BEAMS; ELECTRON EMISSION; ELECTRON TRANSFER; ELECTRONS; ENERGY TRANSFER; PLASMA WAVES; TWO-STREAM INSTABILITY; WAVELENGTHS