Initial stage of gas discharge in an inhomogeneous electric field

S. Ya Belomyttsev, I. V. Romanchenko, V. V. Ryzhov, Valery Alexandrovich Shklyaev

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


A model of the initial stage of gas discharge has been developed within the framework of the particle in cell (PIC) method, with allowance for the space charge and particle collisions described using the Monte Carlo (MC) numerical simulation technique. The PIC/MC simulations of the initial stage of discharge under conditions of the electric field strength to gas pressure ratio E/P > 1 kV/(cm Torr) showed that a beam of runaway electrons is formed within ∼10 ps near the cathode, which consists of both emitted electrons and those generated as a result of the gas ionization. The duration of the beam pulse is determined primarily by plasma screening of the external electric field near the cathode and amounts to 10-20 ps.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)367-369
Number of pages3
JournalTechnical Physics Letters
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)

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