Handbook of Vacuum Arc Science & Technology

Fundamentals and Applications

Edited by

  • Raymond L. Boxman, Tel Aviv University, Israel
  • David M. Sanders, David Sanders formerly professor at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
  • Philip J. Martin, CSIRO, Division of Applied Physics, Australia

This is a comprehensive text describing the basic physics and technological applications of vacuum arcs. Part I describes basic physics of the vacuum arc, beginning with a brief tutorial review of plasma and electrical discharge physics, then describes the arc ignition process, cathode and anode spots which serve as the locus for plasma generation, and resultant interelectrode plasma. Part II describes the applications of the vacuum arc for depositing thin films and coatings, refining metals, switching high power, and as sources of intense electron, ion, plasma, and x-ray beams.
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Engineers, including surface engineering personnel, technicians, and other plant personnel in process industries such as semiconductors and microelectronics. Especially informative for those new to the field.


Book information

  • Published: December 1996
  • ISBN: 978-0-8155-1375-9

Table of Contents

Part I: Fundamentals of Vacuum Arc Science and Technology1. Electrical Discharges and Plasmas-A Brief Tutorial Definitions and Purpose of the Chapter Collision Processes Collective Behavior Conduction of Electrical Current Magnetic Effects Electrode Effects Chapter Summary References2. Arc Ignition Introduction Field Emission Insulator Enhanced Emission Particle Effects Main Insulator Considerations Breakdown-to-Arc Transition Arc Ignition from Low Voltage Sources Laser Ignition Hollow-Cathode Arc Chapter Summary References3. Cathode Spots Phenomenology Theories of Cathode Spots Chapter Summary References4. The Interelectrode Plasma Introduction The Multi-Cathode Spot Vacuum Arc Experimental Characterization of the Interelectrode Plasma The Interelectrode Plasma in an External Magnetic Field The Interelectrode Plasma Model Plasma-Macroparticles Interaction Plasma and Current Interaction with a Magnetic Field Summary and Conclusions References5. Anode Phenomena Introduction Anode Modes Transitions Between Anode Modes Theories and Models of Anode PhenomenaPart II: Applications of Vacuum Arc Science and Technology6. Coatings From the Vacuum Arc Vacuum Arc Deposition Arc Source Designs Rigid-Rotor Models of Plasma Flow Film Growth Applications of Arc-Deposited Coatings Emerging Applications and New Opportunities with PVD Arc Sources7. Vacuum Arc Metal Processing Introduction General Metallurgical Aspects of Vacuum Treatment VAR Technology Other Vacuum Arc Melting and Remelting Technologies Comparison with Other Remelting Technologies Summary and Conclusions References8. Vacuum Switching of High Current and High Voltage at Power Frequencies Introduction to Power Switching Fundamentals of Current Interruption Construction of Vacuum Interrupters Application of Vacuum Switchgear References9. Pulsed Power Applications Introduction Pulsed Power Concepts and Definitions Vacuum Arcs as Switches Vacuum Arcs as Loads References Nomenclature-by Subject Nomenclature-Alphabetical Index About the Contributors