We observed an anomalous discharge mode causing explosive surface evaporation and emission of hard x rays of 10–40 keV in the regime of the lower hydrogen partial pressures of hydrogen–argon mixture in a Mather type plasma focus device of 1.5 kJ. At the anomalous mode, the x rays were emitted from only the surface of the anode without emissions from a plasma column or hot spots, accompanying with explosive evaporations of the anode surface.

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