Plasma Source for Bipolar Electron-Optical System
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The paper presents the experimental study of pulsed plasma source with hollow cathode intended for bipolar electron-optical system with open-boundary plasma. The proposed configuration of the plasma source includes two ring-shaped discharge cells based on plasma thruster technology. The plasma source can operate both in a low-current high-voltage mode and a high-current low-voltage mode. The main attention is paid to the highcurrent mode which is similar to the glow discharge positive column. It is found that along with the discharge in closed electron drift the ignition of additional, non-self-sustained hollow cathode discharge with electron oscillation is possible, thus considerably reducing the voltage of the closed-drift discharge. Current–voltage characteristics of the high-current discharge are measured for these conditions. Using the double probe technique, the local plasma parameters are measured together with their spatial distribution in the discharge region. The maximum plasma density along the plasma source axis is (6.5–6.8)•1012 сm–3.
Keywordsplasma source anode layer bipolar electron-optical system plasma accelerator plasma thruster
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