The memory effect (the dependence of the dynamic breakdown voltage Ub on the time interval τ between voltage pulses) in pulse-periodic discharges in pure argon and the Ar + 1%N2 mixture was studied experimentally. The discharge was ignited in a 2.8-cm-diameter tube with an interelectrode distance of 75 cm. The measurements were performed at gas pressures of P = 1, 2, and 5 Torr and discharge currents in a steady stage of the discharge of I = 20 and 56 mA. Breakdown was produced by applying positive-polarity voltage pulses, the time interval between pulses being in the range of τ = 0.5–40 ms. In this range of τ values, a local maximum (the anomalous memory effect) was observed in the dependence Ub(τ). It is shown that addition of nitrogen to argon substantially narrows the range of τ values at which this effect takes place. To analyze the measurement results, the plasma parameters in a steady-state discharge (in both pure argon and the Ar + 1%N2 mixture) and its afterglow were calculated for the given experimental conditions. Analysis of the experimental data shows that the influence of the nitrogen admixture on the shape of the dependence Ub(τ) is, to a large extent, caused by the change in the decay rate of the argon afterglow plasma in the presence of a nitrogen admixture.
Scopus subject areas
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)