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Characterization of an Analytical Theta-Pinch Plasma Generated with a Unidirectional Capacitive Discharge

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The plasma produced by a high-current capacitive discharge through a graphite fiber bundle is compressed by a magnetic field coaxial with the plasma. The magnetic field is generated by the plasma current in a large coil surrounding the plasma. The field induces an azimuthal (theta) current in the plasma. This current couples with the external magnetic field and produces a radial Lorentz force which reduces the rate of plasma expansion. A diode shunt in the capacitive discharge circuit is used for the generation of a unidirectional discharge current. This arrangement eliminates zero-crossings of the discharge current and thus increases the effectiveness of the magnetic field in controlling the radiative properties of the plasma. Design features of the discharge circuit are presented, as well as a comparison of the plasma properties with oscillatory and unidirectional discharge current waveforms.

Keywords: Capacitive discharge; Emission spectroscopy; Magnetic fields; Theta pinch

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Chemistry, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109; present address: AT&T Bell Laboratories, 600 Mountain Ave., Murray Hill, NJ 07974 2: Department of Chemistry, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109

Publication date: January 1, 1988

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