Collisional Electron Detachment in Dielectric Gases

  • R. L. Champion


The collisional dynamics of anions common to the field of gaseous dielectrics is discussed. In particular, the results from recent measurements of absolute, two-body cross sections for detachment and other inelastic processes for collisions of SF 6 - with specific targets is emphasized. These results illustrate that although the “additional” electron attached to SF 6 - is only very weakly bound (or perhaps not bound at all unless some relaxation mechanism has occurred after the anion has formed), the probability of collisionally detaching that electron is extremely small even for collision energies which exceed the electron’s binding energy by a factor as large as one hundred. The dominant collisional decomposition mechanism at low collision energies for sulphur hexafluoride anions is observed to be dissociation into, e.g., SF5 + F-. Measurements of this type can be used to provide insight into macroscopic phenomena such as discharge inception; it is clear however, that our current data base is inadequate to be used to make definitive predictions for such macroscopic phenomena.


Collision Energy Electron Detachment Inelastic Channel Molecular Anion Macroscopic Phenomenon 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. L. Champion
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhysicsCollege of William and MaryWilliamsburgUSA

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