Accession Number : AD0292756

Title :   CESIUM PLASMA STUDIES FOR THERMIONIC ENERGY CONVERSION

Corporate Author : HUGHES RESEARCH LABS MALIBU CA

Personal Author(s) : WADA, J.Y. ; KNECHTLI, R.C.

Report Date : DEC 1962

Pagination or Media Count : 1

Abstract : IMPORTANT STEP TOWARDS AN UNDERSTANDING OF THE MECHANISMS OF ELECTRON INJECTION IN GAS DISCHARGES OR PLASMAS, IN SUCH DEVICES AS THERMIONIC ENERGY CONVERTERS,PLASMA SHEATH. The thermalization of an electron stream injected at a controlled energy (up to 7 eV) into a quiescent cesium plasma was observed. The plasma heating associated with the thermalization of the injected electrons was measured and found to be in general agreement with theoretical expectations. This constitutes an important step towards an understanding of the mechanisms of electron injection in gas discharges or plasmas, in such devices as thermionic energy converters, gas discharge tubes, and ion engines for space propulsion. The resistivity of a highly ionized quiescent cesium plasma was measured for small current densities (negligible ohmic heating of the plasma), at temperatures between 2000 and 2500 K. The measured values of resistivity were found to be in good agreement with those theoretically predicted by Spitzer. This is a significant result because it constitutes one of the first unequivocal measurements of the resistivity of a highly ionized quiescent plasma. The measurements also constitute the first step towards the investigation of ohmic plasma heating as it occurs, for example, in thermionic energy converters. (Author)

Descriptors :   *CESIUM COMPOUNDS, *ELECTRONS, *GAS DISCHARGES, *PLASMAS(PHYSICS), *THERMIONIC EMISSION, ACCELERATION, ENERGY, ENERGY CONVERSION, HEATING, MEASUREMENT, PLASMA SHEATHS, TEMPERATURE.

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE