Recent Advances in the Development of Erosion Sources of Plasma

1Goncharov, OA  https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3890-8458
1Bazhenov, VYu.  https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4784-0923
1Dobrovolsky, AM  https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9917-522X
1Protsenko, IM  https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9887-8900
1Naiko, IV  https://orcid.org/0000-0001-5793-1998
1Institute of Physics of the NAS of Ukraine
Sci. innov. 2019, 15(4):31-41
https://doi.org/10.15407/scine15.04.031
Section: Research and Engineering Innovative Projects of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine
Language: English
Abstract: 
Introduction. Erosion sources of plasma provide a highly productive formation of ion-plasma streams by evaporating the electrode material and have been widely used in science and industry for synthesizing various coatings, modifying material surfaces, and for creating the sources of charged particles.
Problem Statement. At present, the main problem in creating high-quality coatings is their limited homogeneity due to the presence of the microdroplet phase in ion-vapor stream of erosion plasma sources.
Purpose. To create a new generation of erosion plasma sources, particularly, of vacuum arc-type ones that are free of microdroplets in order to efficiently synthesize high-quality coatings with predetermined functional properties.
Materials and Methods. For creating sources of pure metal plasma, an original idea based on the use of axially symmetric plasma-optical system for introducing additional energy into a flow of dense multi-component metal plasma due to efficient self-sustained generation of fast electrons has been proposed. Such energetic electrons are able to effect the plasma flow passing through the system and, particularly, to evaporate and to eliminate microdroplets that essentially limit the use of erosion dense plasma sources for technological developments.
Results. Conceptual design of combined source containing vacuum arc plasma source and axially symmetric cylindrical electrostatic plasma-optical lens in a single device has been created. The designed hardware does not have analogs worldwide.
Conclusions. The research has opened up wide prospects for practical application of the proposed idea for removal undesired micro-impurities while keeping the mass transfer in metal plasma flow formed by vacuum arc source. Combination of plasma lens with vacuum arc ion source enables controlling low energy plasma flow towards the substrate (i.e., film deposition) or towards emission grid (i.e., ion beam generation).
Keywords: dense plasma, erosion plasma source, microdroplets, plasma-optical system
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