We give preliminary results on the breakdown and low current limit of volt-ampere characteristics of simple parallel plate non-equilibrium dc discharges at standard (centimetre size) and micro-discharge conditions. Experiments with micro-discharges are reported attempting to establish the maintenance of E/N, pd and j/p(2) scalings at small dimensions down to 20 mu m. It was found that it may not be possible to obtain properly the left-hand side of the Paschen curve. The possible causes are numerous but we believe that it is possible that long path prevention techniques do not work at high pressures. Nevertheless, the standard scaling laws seem to be maintained down to these dimensions which are consistent with simulations that predict violation of scaling below 10 mu m. Volt-ampere characteristics are also presented and compared with those of the standard size discharges.
Petrovic, Z. L., Skoro, N., Maric, D., Mahony, CMO., Maguire, PD., Radmilovic-Radenovic, M., & Malovic, G. (2008). Breakdown, scaling and volt-ampere characteristics of low current micro-discharges. JOURNAL OF PHYSICS D-APPLIED PHYSICS, 41(19), 194002. https://doi.org/10.1088/0022-3727/41/19/194002