Jul 12 2012

Not All Plasma Sources Created Equally

surfx-sourcesAtmospheric pressure plasmas
 are great tools for surface treatment of materials prior to bonding, gluing, coating and other applications.

They are used in manufacturing many products ranging from stents, catheters and prosthetics for the medical device industry to large, three-dimensional composites for the aerospace industry.

Out there in the marketplace there is a bewildering array of plasma technologies for materials processing. But it’s important to recognize that atmospheric plasmas do not all perform the same way.

Not only are there multiple types of atmospheric plasma sources, but there are vacuum-based plasmas that may be used when batch treatment is convenient. In order to choose among different types, you need to know the “Figures of Merit” that govern their operation.

They are:

• Average electron temperature
• Average electron concentration
• Average neutral temperature
• Breakdown voltage
• Types of reactive gas species
• Average concentration of reactive gas species
• Remote versus direct contact with the substrate

The engineer must run tests to find out which device works best for his or her application.

Check out our application note on Atmospheric Pressure Plasma Technology by clicking here.

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