A compact submicrosecond, high current generator

B. M. Kovalchuk, A. V. Kharlov, V. B. Zorin, A. A. Zherlitsyn

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    19 Citations (Scopus)


    Pulsed current generator was developed for experiments with current carrying pulsed plasma. Main parts of the generator are capacitor bank, low inductive current driving lines, and central load part. Generator consists of four identical sections, connected in parallel to one load. Capacitor bank is assembled from 24 capacitor blocks (100 kV, 80 nF), connected in parallel. It stores 9.6 kJ at 100 kV charging voltage. Each capacitor block incorporates a multigap spark switch, which is able to commute by six parallel channels. Switches operate in dry air at atmospheric pressure. The generator was tested with an inductive load and a liner load. At 17.5 nH inductive load and 100 kV of charging voltage it provides 650 kA of current amplitude with 390 ns rise time with 0.6 damping resistors in discharge circuit of each capacitor block. The net generator inductance without a load was optimized to be as low as 15 nH, which results in extremely low impedance of the generator (∼0.08). It ensures effective energy coupling with a low impedance load such as Z pinch. The generator operates reliably without any adjustments in 70-100 kV range of charging voltage. Jitter in delay between output pulse and triggering pulse is less than 5 ns at 70-100 kV charging voltage. Operation and handling are very simple, because no oil or purified gases are required for the generator. The generator has dimensions 5.24×1.2×0.18 m3 and total weight about 1400 kg, thus manifesting itself as simple, robust, and cost effective apparatus.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number083504
    JournalReview of Scientific Instruments
    Issue number8
    Publication statusPublished - 9 Sep 2009

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Instrumentation

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