Pulsed gas breakdown with high overvoltages in argon and air

E. Crull, H. Krompholz, A. Neuber, L. Hatfield

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Fast gas breakdown with formative times in the sub-nanosecond regime is of interest for pulsed power switching and UWB applications. Use of coaxial transmission lines with conical sections connected to a test gap enables to apply fast voltage pulses to the gap, as well as the simultaneous measurement of voltage across and current through the gap. For small pulse amplitudes, with risetimes of 400 ps, a tip-plane geometry is used, with radii of curvature of 0.5 μm. At pulse amplitudes of 5 kV, and macroscopic field enhancements on the order of 1000, delay times between current and voltage of less than 200 ps for pressures larger than 100 torr are observed, in both argon and dry air. Corresponding current risetimes I/(dI/dt) are less than 100 ps. Using a high voltage pulser (RADAN 303B with pulse slicer SN4, risetime 150 ps at 150 kV amplitude) enables the comparison of formative times for the tip-plane geometry with those of more homogeneous field distributions in the gap.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4D9
Pages (from-to)273
Number of pages1
JournalIEEE International Conference on Plasma Science
StatePublished - 2004
EventIEEE Conference Record - Abstracts: The 31st IEEE International Conference on Plasma Science, ICOPS2004 - Baltimore, MD, United States
Duration: Jun 28 2004Jul 1 2004


Dive into the research topics of 'Pulsed gas breakdown with high overvoltages in argon and air'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this