X-pinch experiments have been performed on a compact 250 kA, 180 ns pulsed power generator specially designed for this purpose at the Institute of High Current Electronics (Tomsk, Russia). The X pinches were composed of two molybdenum wires of diameter 25 μm making an angle of 36° with the z-axis. The X-pinch dynamics was recorded with a 3 ns exposure time using an HSFC Pro four-frame camera. Axial plasma jets propagating toward both the anode and the cathode were observed. The jets became noticeable within 10 ns after the onset of current flow, which approximately corresponded to the time at which the electrical explosion of the X-pinch wires occurred. The velocity of the anode-directed jet reached 107 cm/s, which was about 1.5 times the velocity of the cathode-directed jet. These high jet velocities are inconsistent with the plasma temperature resulting from the wire explosion. Hence, these jets seem to develop due to implosion of the light plasma layer stripped by magnetic forces from the wire surface, and the increase in their velocities is perhaps due to cumulative effects taking place at the X-pinch axis. The X-pinch neck formed as a rule above the initial wire cross point (closer to the anode). In this region, the plasma diameter gradually increased with time and then drastically decreased 10-15 ns prior to the x-ray pulse. Immediately before the x-ray pulse, in the (250-300 μm long) plasma neck, a lower scale constriction developed, forming a «hot spot». It has been confirmed that the anode-directed plasma jet could take some part of the X-pinch wire current because of the evident jet pinching in the anode region. This process seems to determine the neck length.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)