Laser Produced Plasma — Streamer Interaction

  • Laird P. Bradley
Conference paper


One aspect of laser-plasma interaction which has received little attention is the effect of laser-produced ionization on streamer propagation. Vail, et al.,1 have shown spatial channeling of a streamer along a laser ionized path in air. Recently, using a pulsed nitrogen laser to produce ionization, we have demonstrated control of streamer velocity over orders of magnitude for N2 and SF6. Experimentally, a pulsed voltage was applied across a nonuniform field gap to launch a streamer. The laser-induced ionization was produced spatially ahead of the already propagating streamer. The streamer velocity was thereby controlled, this technique is currently being applied to provide subnanosecond jitter in megavolt switches; the process is different from the triggering method of Guenther, et al.2


Electrical Engineer Pulse Voltage Polytechnic Institute Streamer Velocity Atomic Energy Commission 
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  1. 1.
    J. R. Vail, D. A. Tidman, T. D. Wilkerson, and D. W. Koopman, Appl. Phys. L. 17, 20(1970).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    A. H. Guenther and J. R. Bettis, IEEE J. Q. Elect. QE3, 581(1967).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1972

Authors and Affiliations

  • Laird P. Bradley
    • 1
  1. 1.Sandia LaboratoriesAlbuquerqueUSA

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