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Leibniz Institute turns to ultrafast UV imaging to measure plasma mechanisms

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Specialised Imaging reports on how the Leibniz Institute for Plasma Science and Technology eV is using an optimised version of its SIM Framing Camera to make ultra fast UV measurements of the mechanism of plasma being used to modify the electrical properties of polymer films.

The Leibniz Institute for Plasma Science and Technology eV (INP Greifswald) is the largest non-university research institute conducting basic research into and investigating the applications of low temperature plasmas. In addition to the application-oriented basic research, the INP promotes the development of plasma-supported processes and products. The Institute conducts research and development from idea to prototype.

Using an optimised UV optical module and UV ICCD enables the SIM camera to optimally operate in the 200-600nm region allowing INP Greifswald scientists to study the mechanism of plasma breakdown and streamer propagation within the liquid volume, how they interact and produce modifications at the surface and within the bulk structure of polymer films.

Dr Camelia Miron, postdoctoral researcher at INP Griefswald commented "Due to the often limited accessibility of active (laser) diagnostics and the complicated plasma geometries (submerged in liquid), fast framing camera systems are often used as diagnostic tools to investigate plasmas in liquids.  Using a SIM fast framing camera system for the optical diagnosis has enabled us to undertake fundamental research concerning the dynamics of discharge development in liquids".

Dr Miron added "Nanosecond voltage pulses are expected to be responsible for very fast, primarily non-thermal plasma formation in liquids which are furthermore associated with strong electric fields and steep pressure gradients. The streamer propagation velocity was shown to reach speeds of 5000 km s-1. When capturing images from any high speed event the need for additional lighting is always an issue to ensure that the lens can be set to  cover  an adequate depth of field and that sufficiently short exposure  times  can  be  programmed  to  arrest  movement.  Our acquisition of a SIM camera  and  SI-LUX 640 laser  illumination  system from Specialised Imaging was important for obtaining additional valuable information about the plasma breakdown mechanism and select the optimal paramters for polymer films and membranes treatment by plasma in liquids".

Through continuous innovative technical development the SIM framing camera range has established itself as the leading ultra- high speed camera for industrial and academic research groups around the world. Capable of capturing images at 1,000,000,000 frames per second, with gating down to 3ns, the SIM framing camera takes the capture of images for accurate, high-speed spatial analysis of fast transient events to a new level.