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Progress in Plasma Processing of Materials, 2001

1-56700-165-3 (Print)

The influence of the non-local thermal equilibrium parameters on the isentropic exponent in plasmas

K.T.A.L. Burm
Department of Applied Physics, Eindhoven University of Technology P.O. Box 513, 5600 MB Eindhoven

D. C. Schram
Dept. of Applied Physics, Eindhoven University of Technology, P.O. Box 513, 5600 MB, Eindhoven, The Netherlands

W. J. Goedheer
FOM-Institute for Plasma Physics Rijnhuizen, Association EURATOM-FOM, Trilateral Euregio Cluster, PO Box 1207, 3430 BE Nieuwegein, The Netherlands


It will be shown that for non-equilibrium atmospheric monoatomic plasmas the isentropic exponent is 1.2 for a large range of ionization degrees. Deviations from temperature and ionization-recombination equilibrium which depend asymptotically on the electron density are included.
The stiffness of the results, i.e. the small freedom to deviate from equilibrium, expresses the fact that the plasma tends to remain close to its temperature and ionization-recombination equilibrium.
The obtained result enables the use of an (quasi-)adiabatic energy balance to ease the full hydrodynamic modelling of plasmas.