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coefficient at high electron temperatures in neon

D~~sociative-recombination
G. K. Vinogradov, Yu. 6. Golubovskii, V. A. Ivanov,and Yu. M. Kagan
A. A. Zhdanov Leningrad State University
(Submitted April 4. 1973)
Zh. Tekh. Fiz.,5 2584-2590 (December 1973)

The dissociative recombination coefficient is measured in the positive column of a discharge in neon at pres-
sures 50-200 torr and electron densities c 10" cm-'. The recombination coefficient is found as a function of
the temperature over the temperature range 10.000-25.000'K; the function can be approximated by a (Te) -
r;O.".

1, We have previously' proposed a method f o r measuring To tube 0.05 75k + 600 V


the recombination coefficient @(Te) over a broad r a n g e o f
,lectron temperatures. W e have now used this method to
measure the recombination coefficient in the positive col-
,mn of a neon discharge in a cylindrical tube 56 m m in
jiarneter over the neon p r e s s u r e range 50-200 t o r r a t ini-
c u r r e n t s 40-100 mA.
The measurements a r e c a r r i e d out in the diffusepart
,I the discharge before the onset of contraction. Accord-
"gly, a t high p r e s s u r e s the measurements a r e c a r r i e d Fig. 2. Schematic of the switching device.
,lit a t lower c u r r e n t s , and the radial t e m p e r a t u r e inho-
nogeneity c a n be n e g l e ~ t e d . ~
Two cylindrical probes 0.3 m m in d i a m e t e r and 3 m m
ong a r e located a t the axis (perpendicular to the axis) and 2. A rectangular c u r r e n t pulse is used to m e a s u r e
Ire 54 m m a p a r t . the recombination coefficient in the discharge tube.
The determination of the recombination coefficient Figure 1 shows a block d i a g r a m of the power supply;
rom the equations of r e f . 1 r e q u i r e s a knowledge of the Fig. 2 shows a schematic d i a g r a m of the switching device.
nitial value and radial distribution of the electron den- The 5-kV voltage f r o m the high-voltage rectifier i s fed to
ity, n ( r , 0). The radial distribution is found by a diag- a switching circuit that u s e s GMI-83 modulator tubes. The
,ostic method based on the continuous s p e ~ t r u m .In~ the circuit i s turned off and on by pulses from a G5-7A double
.bsence of radial temperature inhomogeneities the radial pulse generator. The c u r r e n t signal, taken f r o m a 36-a
ntensity decay of the continuous spectrum. J A ( r ) , i s pro- r e s i s t o r in the anode c i r c u i t of the discharge tube, i s fed
ortional to the radial distribution of the electron density : to one input of a n S1-17 oscilloscope. The e l e c t r i c field
E(t) i s measured by the double-probe method with the po-
tential-display c i r c u i t shown in Fig. 3 . This c i r c u i t con-
The continuum intensity is measured a t A = 3890 A, s i s t s of t h r e e functional units:
ormal to the discharge tube. The Abel analysis i s c a r - a ) T h e voltage pickup,which u s e s a high-frequency
ied out by the method of NesCor and 01sen4 by means of TN-12MV field-effect t r a n s i s t o r with a n isolated gate.
computer. Under the measured conditions, the input r e s i s t a n c e of
The initial absolute value of the electron density a t this pickup is equal to the r e s i s t a n c e of the blocked D220
le axis, no, i s determined f r o m limiting diodes (lo8 i2 o r higher).

R b) The strobe c i r c u i t i s a n electronic chopper. T h i s


i, = 2ze-6, (Eo)E , p , y ( r , 0 ) rdr. (1 circuit i s controlled by pulses f r o m the second channel of
0

se is made of the following relationship5 between the


lectron temperature Te and the longitudinal e l e c t r l c field

display

+ in r p = ' ~ " ~
Fre =zoo

Fig. 1. Block diagram of the electrical power supply. Fig. 3. Schematic of the potential-display circuit.

23 Sov. Phys. Tech. Phys.. Vol. 18. No. 12. June 1974 Copyright @ 1974 American Institute o f Physics
the G5-7A generator, which a r e synchronized with the cur-
r e n t pulses.
C) A capacitor bank is the voltage-display device.
Figure 4 shows a characteristic for the circuit f o r a
d c input voltage. The working p a r t of the characteristic
i s outlined by the dashed lines.
The resolving time of the circuit i s a function of the
frequency of the voltage being studied; in o u r c a s e the rep- Fig. 5
etition frequency i s JX 200 112 and the resolving time i s
A T -- 5 . sec. The final equation is written conveniently a s
Since the pickup has an extremely high resistanceand
the probe c u r r e n t is essentially zero, t h e r e is no distor-
tion of the floating probe potential. The probe potential i s
measured by comparing the voltage to be measured with
J-
p Lf n, (r. Ordr

I n e ( r , tlrdr
0 '
a reference voltage TJ,, for which purpose a B3-33 dc pow-
e r supply is connected in s e r i e s with the potential-display
circuit. where El i s the field immediately after the c u r r e n t drop
In analyzing the operation of the potential-display c i r - (Fig. 6b).
cuit we assume that the input signal has the shapeshown The density ne(r, t) is found f r o m
in Fig. 5a. By adjusting the delay time of the s t r o b e p u l s e
we place this pulse a t t, (Fig. 5b). We adjust the voltage
Ur to make it equal to the voltage taken f r o m the probe,
U i n The r e s u l t i s a deflection of the needle of the indi-
cating device. The circuit can be used to m e a s u r e Win where i s the effective dissociative-recombination coef.
within an uncertainty a s low a s 0.3 V . f ic ient .
The electric field i s calculated f r o m the difference In Eq. (5) we have neglected the l o s s of charge due to
between the probe potentials: ambipolar diffusion to the wall and the appearance of
charge a s a r e s u l t of d i r e c t and stepwise ionization.
E([)= uin~( t ) - IlinzClJ
AL I W e have the familiar equation

where A1 is the distance between the probes. The accura-


cy of the determination of E(t) is governed completely by
the accuracy of the measurements of U, and Al; in ourex-
periments E(t) is measured within a 5%.
where D, = b (kT$e) i s the ambipolar-diffusion coeffi-
3. T o analyze the results we u s e P
cient, and bp i s the mobility of the ~ e :molecular ions?
The dissociative-recombination time i s r , = l/(ano)
R
1, = 2wb, ( E )E $ n, ( r , t ) rdr, Under the experimental conditions, we have Te ;r 2 '
o lo4'K, no = lo'', Q e lo-', and a pressure of p EJ lootort-
the diffusion time corresponding to these conditions is hvo
where E i s a function of the time. F o r neon we have o r d e r s of magnitude longer than the recombination time.
be(E) -
1 / ( ~ ~ ) ' " also,
; using (2) we find
Since the field E and the temperature decay rapidly
n immediately after the c u r r e n t drop, d i r e c t ionization
i, = const cjB(1)
0
5 n, ( r , 1) rdr. (3) c e a s e s to play a role.
To evaluate the r o l e of stepwise ionization we must
Equation (3) i s used after the c u r r e n t drop fImm the evaluate the decay time of the metastable atoms. under
value io to the value i t (Fig. 6a). the present conditions the basic mechanism f o r the 1039
of metas table atoms involves transitions to resonance lev

-by
e l s incollisions with electrons and the subsequent ernis-
uout* v sion of resonance lines. Since the c r o s s section for t h w
transitions i s 7 s 1 0 - ~ ~ - 1 0 -c' m2,
~ the corresponding time
f o r these transitions under o u r experimental conditionsi9
;J 1 0 - ~ - 1 0 - s
~e c . Since the discharge time f o r the reso-
Fig. 4. Characteristic of the record-
nance lines under o u r conditions is a sec, W e
ing circuir.
find that the metastable atoms decay within 10-~-10-'
I
I s e c . This time is one o r two o r d e r s of magnitude short''
I than the density,decay time. The decaying population
'. 7 .5 uin, v metastable atoms during recombination cannot be impor-

- . - -L..- ---I. oh.,. vnl. 18. No. 12, June 1974 Vinogradov et al.
Fig. 6. Current ( a ) , longitudinal e l e c - Fig. 7. Longitudinal field (a), current
tric field (b). and electron density ( c ) (b), and electron density (c) as func-
as functions of the time. tions of the time.
t

tmt because the decay r a t e is o r d e r s of magnitude lower o r , after substituting into Eq. (4),
than the depopulation rate.
Accordingly for a certain time interval after the cur- - i n ( r . 0)rdr
,I
drop, direct and stepwise ionization a r e unimportant.
st cording to Fig. 6b the field E and thus the temperature n (r. 0 ) rdr
1
T~ increase a s time elapses so that ionization can become i + n ( r , 0 )j a (7) dz
important after a certain time. Here, it i s important to 0

t&e account of direct ionization and excitation since no


Converting to the function
sinble atoms a r e formed as a result of direct excitation.
Assuming for this estimate that the number of ioniza-
tion events Z i s equal to the total number of inelastic col-
lisions,' we can write
where x = r/R, we find

here ve, and vee a r e the r a t e s of electron-atom and


?lectron-electron collisions. F o r these conditions y al, We use the measured radial distribution y(x) f o r a
~ndthe distribution function i s approximately a Druyvesteyn computer calculation of the function F(Y) for various val-
'unction. Assuming that the density is essentially constant ues of Y, and we construct this function f o r the given
it the end of the time interval of interest, we can write y(x) distribution. By measuring E(t) and calculating
[ E ( ~ ) / E ~ ) ' 'we
~ ] can then find the values of Y(t) for various
t: F r o m these results we construct the function Y(t).
Knowing n(O), we find a ( t ) by graphical differentiation.
From the measured function E(t) we can easily associate
a time t with each value of the electric field. Accordingly,
vhere V1 is the energy of the f i r s t excited level of neon. measurement of ~ ( t yields ) the recombination coefficient
'hen a s a function of E o r , according to (2), the function a(Te).
5. The circuit controlling the discharge can be modi-
fied in such a manner that the electric fieldchanges abrupt-
ly during the discharge (Fig. 7a). At the new constantval-
ue of the electric field, the discharge current falls off
.e., when the change in the electron temperature f r o m the
Wilibrium temperature is about 20% the number of direct
'nization events falls off by an o r d e r of magnitude. Ac-
ordingly, we can neglect ionization essentially throughout
le time interval f r o m the point a t which the current i s c u t
If to the establishment of a new steady state.
4. Solving Eq. (5). taking account of the function cdt),
'e find

Fig. 8. Measured recohbinarion coefficients. p. tort: 1) 200: 2) 75; 3) 50.

'2s Sov. Phyr. Tech. Phys.. Vol. 18. No. 12, June 1974 Vinogradov e t al. 1625
Fig. 9. Relative functional dependence of t h e recombination coefficient on Fig. 10. Effective recombination coefficient as a function of the pressure.
the temperature. p, tort: 1) 200: 2) 75: 3) 50. T h e points show t h e coefficients c a l c u l a t e d from the data of ref. lo.

smoothly.' F o r this purpose a switching device is con- . 6 . Some of the experimental results are shown in
nected in parallel with the discharge tube in the control Fig. 8 a s the values of @(Te)for various p r e s s u r e s . 1-1,~
circuit. quantity a has this functional dependence of the pressurc
because the recombination coefficient which we measure
The small initial drop in the current r e s u l t s f r o m
is an effective recombination coefficient, taking into ac-
shunting of the current to the switch, while the subsequent
count both the relative density of molecular ions and in-
smooth decay r e s u l t s from the recombination of charged
verse transitions f r o m the excited state to the continuum.3
particles.
Ln addition to a functional dependence on the pressure, we
The value of the current after the slight initial jump observe a weak functional dependence on the discharge
is current. When we convert these results to relative units,
assuming als,ooo = 1. we find essentially the samedecrease
in o/eff a s a function of the temperature f o r all the experi-
mental conditions; this functional dependence is described
by T , ~ .over~ ~ the temperature range studied (Fig. 9). ~t
and we have i s interesting to compare o u r r e s u l t s with those of ref.
10; f r o m Fig. 10 we s e e that the effective recombination
R
i ( t )= c o n s t dF 5 n ( r , t ) rdr. coefficient falls off with increasing p r e s s u r e .
0

The solution of Eq. (5) in this c a s e is 'G. K. Vinogradov. Yu. 8.Golubovskii.V. A. Ivanov, and Yu. M. Kagan.
Zh. Tekh. Fiz.. 2,2186 (1973) [Sov. phys. - T e c h . Phys.. 18.1378(1974)].
'YU. 8 . Golubovskii (I*. 8. Golubovskij) Yu. M. Kagan (lu. h.I. K ~ g r n l ,
a n d P. Michel. Beitr. Plasrnaphys.. 11, 1 2 1 (1971).
'YU. B. Golubovskii. V. A. Ivanov. a n d Yu. M. Kagan. Opt. Spektrosk..z,
Then 213 (19731.
'0. H. Nestor a n d H. N. Olren, in: Ergebnisre der Plasrnaphysik und der
Gaselektronik (ed. R. Rornpe and ht. Steenbek), Akademieverlag, Berlin
(1961).
%u. 8. Golubovskii, Yu. kl. Kagan, and R. I. Lyagushchenko, Zh. Eksp.
57.
Teor. Fiz.. 2122 (1969) [Sov. Fhys. -jETP, 30. 1204 (1970)l.
'5. C. BIOWn, Basic Data of Plasma Physics, ~ i l e y ( 1 9 6 1 ) .
'A. V. Pl~elps. Phys. Rev.. 114. 1 0 1 1 (1059).
'YU. B. Golubovskii (Ju. B. Golubovskijl, Yu. M. Kagan (Ju. hl. ~ a g a n ) . a n d
A s in the f i r s t method, we calculate the function 4 P. Michel, Reitr. Plasrnaphys.. 5, 442 31968).
for the measured radial distribution a s a function of the %I. M. Kagan and R. I. Lyagushchenko, Lh. TeCh. Fiz., 40, 2013 (11170)
parameter no a t . The function 4 is plotted, and the mea- -
[Sov. Phys. Tech. Phys., 2, 1568 (1971Jl.
s u r e d values of i(t)/i. a r e used to find m . "I. Fhilbrick. F . Y. hlehr. ~ n XI.
d A. Blondi. Phyr. Rev.. 1S1. 271 (1969).

.
a
.,
- ---. DL... T P C ~ . Phvs.. vol. 18. No. 12, June 1974 Vinogradov e t al.