Temporally resolved electron density of a repetitive, nanosecond pulsed microdischarge

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Using high speed spectroscopic diagnostics, temporally resolved optical emission spectroscopy is performed on a nanosecond, repetitively pulsed microdischarge. The microdischarge operates in an argon-hydrogen gas mixture (99%/1%) to provide a Lyman-α vacuum ultraviolet emission. Based on the Stark broadening of the 486.1 nm, Balmer-β hydrogen transition, the temporally resolved electron density was determined. Experimental electron density data are compared with the results of a 0D rate equation model. Peak electron density is estimated to be 5.6 • 1015cm-3, corresponding to a ∼0.25% degree of ionization. Using the approximate experimental ionization rate, the electron temperature is estimated to be ∼3.5 eV.

Original languageEnglish
Article number465205
JournalJournal of Physics D: Applied Physics
Issue number46
StatePublished - Nov 19 2014


  • microdischarge
  • pulsed discharge
  • stark broadening


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