This paper describes a novel and simple concept of plasma source, which is able to produce a radiofrequency magnetized discharge with minimal power requirements. The source is based on the magnetron concept and uses a permanent magnet as an active electrode. The dipolar field produced by the magnet confines the electrons, which cause further ionization, thus producing a toroidally shaped plasma in the equatorial region around the electrode. A plasma can be ignited with such scheme with power levels as low as 5 W. Paschen curves have been built for four different working gases, showing that in Helium or Neon, plasma breakdown is easily obtained also at atmospheric pressure. The plasma properties have been measured using a balanced Langmuir probe, showing that the electron temperature is around 3-4 eV and higher in the cathode proximity. Plasma densities of the order of 1016m-3have been obtained, with a good positive scaling with applied power. Overall, the electron pressure appears to be strongly correlated with the magnetic field magnitude in the measurement point.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Condensed Matter Physics