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Plasma Sci. Technol. ›› 2019, Vol. 21 ›› Issue (4): 044002.doi: 10.1088/2058-6272/aafbc7

• The 2018 Asia-Pacific Conference on Plasma and Terahertz Science (APCOPTS) • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Numerical simulation and analysis of lithium plasma during low-pressure DC arc discharge

Runhui WU (邬润辉) 1, Song CHAI (柴忪) 1, Jiaqi LIU (刘佳琪) 1, Shiyuan CONG (从拾源) 2 and Gang MENG (孟刚)1   


  1. 1 National Key Laboratory of Science and Technology on Test Physics & Numerical Mathematics, Beijing 100076, People’s Republic of China
    2 School of Physics, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116024, People’s Republic of China
  • Received:2018-09-27 Published:2019-01-02
  • Supported by:

    The authors gratefully acknowledge the support from National Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant Nos. 61302029, 61571031, 61671044 and 61871018


Alkali metal DC arc discharge has the characteristics of easy ionization, low power consumption, high plasma temperature and ionization degree, etc, which can be applied in aerospace vehicles in various ways. In this paper, we calculate the physical property parameters of lithium vapor, one of the major alkali metals, and analyze the discharge characteristics of lithium plasma with the magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) model. The discharge effects between constant current and voltage sources are also compared. It is shown that the lithium plasma of DC arc discharge has relatively high temperature and current density. The peak temperature can reach tens of thousands of K, and the current density reaches 6×10 7−2 . Under the same rated power, the plasma parameters of the constant voltage source discharge are much higher than those of the constant current source discharge, which can be used as the preferred discharge mode for aerospace applications.