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Title: Piezoelectric transformers for low-voltage generation of gas discharges and ionic winds in atmospheric air

To generate a gas discharge (plasma) in atmospheric air requires an electric field that exceeds the breakdown threshold of ∼30 kV/cm. Because of safety, size, or cost constraints, the large applied voltages required to generate such fields are often prohibitive for portable applications. In this work, piezoelectric transformers are used to amplify a low input applied voltage (<30 V) to generate breakdown in air without the need for conventional high-voltage electrical equipment. Piezoelectric transformers (PTs) use their inherent electromechanical resonance to produce a voltage amplification, such that the surface of the piezoelectric exhibits a large surface voltage that can generate corona-like discharges on its corners or on adjacent electrodes. In the proper configuration, these discharges can be used to generate a bulk air flow called an ionic wind. In this work, PT-driven discharges are characterized by measuring the discharge current and the velocity of the induced ionic wind with ionic winds generated using input voltages as low as 7 V. The characteristics of the discharge change as the input voltage increases; this modifies the resonance of the system and subsequent required operating parameters.
Authors:
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [2]
  1. Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, Indianapolis 46556 (United States)
  2. (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22493086
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Applied Physics; Journal Volume: 118; Journal Issue: 24; Other Information: (c) 2015 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
71 CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM MECHANICS, GENERAL PHYSICS; AIR FLOW; BREAKDOWN; ELECTRIC DISCHARGES; ELECTRIC FIELDS; ELECTRIC POTENTIAL; ELECTRODES; IONS; LIMITING VALUES; PIEZOELECTRICITY; PLASMA; RESONANCE; SURFACES; TRANSFORMERS