Plasma decay in high-voltage nanosecond discharges in oxygen-containing mixtures
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Plasma decay in high-voltage nanosecond discharges in CO2: O2 and Ar: O2 mixtures at room gas temperature and a pressure of 10 Torr is studied experimentally and theoretically. The time dependence of the electron density during plasma decay is measured using microwave interferometry. The time evolution of the charged particle density, ion composition, and electron temperature is simulated numerically. It is shown that, under the given conditions, the discharge plasma is dominated for the most time by O2+ ions and plasma decay is determined by dissociative and three-body electron−ion recombination. As in the previous studies performed for air and oxygen plasmas, agreement between measurements and calculations is achieved only under the assumption that the rate of three-body recombination of molecular ions is much greater than that for atomic ions. The values of the rate constant of three-body recombination of electrons with О2+ ions in a wide range of electron temperatures (500–5500 K), as well as for thermal (300 K) electrons, are obtained by processing the experimental results.
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