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  1. Transition characteristics of low-pressure discharges in a hollow cathode

    Based on a two-dimensional (2-D) fluid model, the transition processes of discharges in a hollow cathode at low pressure are observed by changing three parameters, i.e., applied voltage U 0, gas pressure p, and external circuit ballast resistance R b. The voltage-current characteristic curves, electron density distributions, and electric potential distributions of different discharge operating points in a hollow cathode are obtained. The transition processes are characterized by the voltage-current characteristic curves, the electron density distributions, and the electrical potential distributions. The transition modes observed from the voltage-current characteristics include the low-current abnormal mode, normal mode, and high-current abnormal mode.more » Increasing the applied voltage U0 can have a similar effect on the discharge transition processes to decreasing the ballast resistance. By increasing U0 from 200V to 500V and decreasing Rb from 5000 kX to 100 kX independently, it is observed that the discharge transfers from the outside to the inside of the hollow cavity, thus forming the virtual anode potential. By increasing the gas pressure p from 50 Pa to 5 kPa, the discharge also moves into the hollow cavity from the outside; however, a further increase in the gas pressure leads to the discharge escaping from the hollow cavity. Simulation results and characterizations for different parameters are presented for the transition properties of low-pressure discharges in a hollow cathode. It is verified that the hollow cathode discharge only exists under certain ranges of the above parameters.« less
  2. Investigation on the similarity law of low-pressure glow discharges based on the light intensity distributions in geometrically similar gaps

    Experimental investigation of the light intensity distributions of a low-pressure glow discharge is carried out in several pairs of geometrically similar plane-parallel gaps, of which the aspect ratios and the products of the linear dimension and the gas pressure are the same. The discharge images are captured using a Charge Coupled Device camera, from which the corresponding axial light intensity distributions are presented. Based on the obtained light intensity distributions, the thicknesses of cathode fall layers were identified by measuring the distance between the peak glow position and the cathode boundary. The influence of the discharge current on the lightmore » intensity distributions on the geometrically similar gaps is also investigated. It was found that, for discharges in each pair of geometrically similar gaps, the reduced cathode fall thicknesses are observed to be identical when the discharge currents are the same. In conclusion, the similarity relation of the cathode fall thickness is validated for low-pressure glow discharges in gaps for different aspect ratios.« less
  3. Conformal Electromagnetic Particle in Cell: A Review

    We review conformal (or body-fitted) electromagnetic particle-in-cell (EM-PIC) numerical solution schemes. Included is a chronological history of relevant particle physics algorithms often employed in these conformal simulations. We also provide brief mathematical descriptions of particle-tracking algorithms and current weighting schemes, along with a brief summary of major time-dependent electromagnetic solution methods. Several research areas are also highlighted for recommended future development of new conformal EM-PIC methods.
  4. Paschen's curve in microgaps with an electrode surface protrusion

  5. Fusion Energy Sciences Exascale Requirements Review. An Office of Science review sponsored jointly by Advanced Scientific Computing Research and Fusion Energy Sciences, January 27-29, 2016, Gaithersburg, Maryland

    The additional computing power offered by the planned exascale facilities could be transformational across the spectrum of plasma and fusion research — provided that the new architectures can be efficiently applied to our problem space. The collaboration that will be required to succeed should be viewed as an opportunity to identify and exploit cross-disciplinary synergies. To assess the opportunities and requirements as part of the development of an overall strategy for computing in the exascale era, the Exascale Requirements Review meeting of the Fusion Energy Sciences (FES) community was convened January 27–29, 2016, with participation from a broad range ofmore » fusion and plasma scientists, specialists in applied mathematics and computer science, and representatives from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and its major computing facilities. This report is a summary of that meeting and the preparatory activities for it and includes a wealth of detail to support the findings. Technical opportunities, requirements, and challenges are detailed in this report (and in the recent report on the Workshop on Integrated Simulation). Science applications are described, along with mathematical and computational enabling technologies. Also see http://exascaleage.org/fes/ for more information.« less
  6. Gas breakdown in atmospheric pressure microgaps with a surface protrusion on the cathode

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  7. Characterizing the dominant ions in low-temperature argon plasmas in the range of 1–800 Torr

  8. Enhanced window breakdown dynamics in a nanosecond microwave tail pulse

    The mechanisms of nanosecond microwave-driven discharges near a dielectric/vacuum interface were studied by measuring the time- and space-dependent optical emissions and pulse waveforms. The experimental observations indicate multipactor and plasma developing in a thin layer of several millimeters above interface. The emission brightness increases significantly after main pulse, but emission region widens little. The mechanisms are studied by analysis and simulation, revealing intense ionization concentrated in a desorbed high-pressure layer, leading to a bright light layer above surface; the lower-voltage tail after main pulse contributes to heat electron energy tails closer to excitation cross section peaks, resulting in brighter emission.
  9. Analysis Code for High Gradient Dielectric Insulator Surface Breakdown

    High voltage (HV) insulators are critical components in high-energy, accelerator and pulsed power systems that drive diverse applications in the national security, nuclear weapons science, defense and industrial arenas. In these systems, the insulator may separate vacuum/non-vacuum regions or conductors with high electrical field gradients. These insulators will often fail at electric fields over an order of magnitude lower than their intrinsic dielectric strength due to flashover at the dielectric interface. Decades of studies have produced a wealth of information on fundamental processes and mechanisms important for flashover initiation, but only for relatively simple insulator configurations in controlled environments. Acceleratormore » and pulsed power system designers are faced with applying the fundamental knowledge to complex, operational devices with escalating HV requirements. Designers are forced to rely on “best practices” and expensive prototype testing, providing boundaries for successful operation. However, the safety margin is difficult to estimate, and system design must be very conservative for situations where testing is not practicable, or replacement of failed parts is disruptive or expensive. The Phase I program demonstrated the feasibility of developing an advanced code for modeling insulator breakdown. Such a code would be of great interest for a number of applications, including high energy physics, microwave source development, fusion sciences, and other research and industrial applications using high voltage devices.« less
  10. Pressure effect on a tandem hollow cathode discharge in argon

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