Heating mechanisms for electron swarms in radio-frequency electric and magnetic fields

Saša Dujko, Danko Bošnjaković, Ronald White, Zoran Petrović

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16 Citations (Scopus)


Starting from analytical and numerical solutions of the equation for collisionless motion of a single electron in time-varying electric and magnetic fields, we investigate the possible mechanisms for power absorption of electron swarms in neutral gases. A multi term theory for solving the Boltzmann equation is used to investigate the power absorption of electrons in radio-frequency (rf) electric and magnetic fields in collision-dominated regime for Reid’s inelastic ramp model gas and molecular oxygen. It is found that the effect of resonant absorption of energy in oscillating rf electric and magnetic fields observed under conditions
when collisions do not occur, carries directly over to the case where collisions control the swarm behavior. In particular, we have observed the periodic structures in the absorbed power versus amplitude of the applied rf magnetic field curve which have a physical origin similar to the oscillatory phenomena observed for collisionless electron motion. The variation of the absorbed power and other transport properties with the field frequency and field amplitudes in
varying configurations of rf electric and magnetic fields is addressed using physical arguments.
Original languageEnglish
Article number054006
Number of pages13
JournalPlasma Sources Science and Technology
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 23 Sept 2015


  • electron swarms
  • transport coeffcients
  • Boltzmann equation
  • electron heating


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