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Holding current for stable plasma

  1. Apr 8, 2010 #1
    I'm interested in building a plasma loudspeaker using a 1kW amplitude modulated RF amplifier. The amplifier will modulate the output of a 27Mhz RLC circuit which is connected in series between two Tungsten electrodes (opposite polarity). I believe if a potential of 30kV/cm is placed between the electrodes, dielectric breakdown of the air will occur and plasma will form. Electricity will then be conducted through the plasma. If we modulate the 27Mhz resonance, we can vary the size of the plasma rapidly to produce sound in the audio bandwidth.

    If we directed helium gas towards the electrodes, how much would this effect dielectric breakdown? How could I calculate the distribution of air and helium? Would it be possible to calculate ozone production?

    For a stable plasma to be assumed, a "holding current" must be maintained. How can I calculate this? The holding current will place a constraint on the widest possible air gap that will support a stable plasma if I have a limited amount of power.

    Is infinite electrical conductivity a poor assumption for the plasma?

    How can I calculate the pressure field (ie acoustic field) created by modulating the resonance by varying the current? How can I calculate the percentage of electrical energy that is converted to acoustic energy?

  2. jcsd
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