Longitudinal sputtering hollow cathode discharge (HCD) used as active medium for lasing is studied by means of numerical modelling. Due to the longitudinal non-uniformities of the discharge, the laser operation could be strongly affected. The non-uniformity of the discharge is mainly influenced by the dimensions of the hollow cathode, in particular by the aspect ratio length/radius. To study the geometrical features, a simulation model for HCDs has been constructed using the Plasimo modelling platform. The model allows in-depth studies of the plasma mechanisms and enables finding the optimum under the working conditions of the HCDs. The model is validated by comparing the results with the experimental observations. The spatial distribution of the plasma density and potential as well as an in-depth discussion of the results and the trends revealed by the model are presented. The proper understanding of the essential geometrical features allowed defining the optimal aspect ratio length/diameter for stable and uniform discharge with high excitation efficiency.
Mihailova, D. B., Dijk, van, J., Hagelaar, G. J. M., Karatodorov, S., Zahariev, P., Grozeva, M., & Mullen, van der, J. J. A. M. (2012). Geometrical features in longitudinal sputtering hollow cathode discharges for laser applications. Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics, 45(16), 1-10. . https://doi.org/10.1088/0022-3727/45/16/165201