The individual contributions of various gas discharge mechanisms to total pre-breakdown current in microgaps are quantified numerically. The variation of contributions of field emission and secondary electron emission with increasing electric field shows contrasting behavior even for a given gap size. The total current near breakdown decreases rapidly with gap size indicating that microscale discharges operate in a high-current, low-voltage regime. This study provides the first such analysis of breakdown mechanisms and aids in the formulation of physics-based theories for microscale breakdown.
Pre-breakdown evaluation of gas discharge mechanisms in microgaps
Abbas Semnani, Ayyaswamy Venkattraman, Alina A. Alexeenko, Dimitrios Peroulis; Pre-breakdown evaluation of gas discharge mechanisms in microgaps. Appl. Phys. Lett. 29 April 2013; 102 (17): 174102. https://doi.org/10.1063/1.4803179
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