Dependence of the transition from Townsend to glow discharge on secondary emission

Yu.P. Raizer, U. Ebert, D.D. Sijacic

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In a recent paper, Šijacic and Ebert [Phys. Rev. E. 66, 006410 (2002)] systematically studied the transition from Townsend to glow discharge, referring to older work by von Engel and M. Steenbeck [Elektrische Gasentladungen. Ihre Physik und Technik (Springer, Berlin 1934), Vol. II] up to Raizer [Gas Discharge Physics (Springer, Berlin, 1991)]. Šijacic and Ebert stated that this transition strongly depends on secondary emission ¿ from the cathode. We show here that the earlier results of von Engel and Raizer on the small current expansion about the Townsend limit actually are the limit of small ¿ of the Šijacic and Ebert expression, and that for larger ¿ the old and the Šijacic and Ebert new results vary by no more than a factor of 2. We discuss the ¿ dependence of the transition, which is rather strong for short gaps.
Original languageEnglish
Article number017401
Pages (from-to)017401-1/3
Number of pages3
JournalPhysical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2004


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