Plasma-closing switch with corona electrodes: development and operational characteristics when filled with different gases

Rights statement
Awarding institution
  • University of Strathclyde
Date of award
  • 2023
Thesis identifier
  • T16526
Person Identifier (Local)
  • 201777219
Qualification Level
Qualification Name
Department, School or Faculty
  • High voltage gas-filled plasma closing switches are critical components of pulsed power systems due to their capability to operate in wide voltage and current ranges (from tens of amperes to hundreds of kiloamperes). They can handle high rates of change in currents and voltages, dI/dt, and dV/dt, and provide a short switching time with low jitter when operating in a triggered mode. The aims of this thesis are (i) to develop a novel, two-stage gas-filled plasma closing switch with corona electrodes and (ii) to investigate its operational performance in the self-breakdown and triggered operation regimes when filled with different environmentally friendly gases. The corona discharge electrodes used in the developed switch help to improve the switch’s operational stability providing minimal standard deviation in the self-breakdown voltage and minimal jitter in the case of the triggered operational mode. The operational performance of this plasma closing switch in both self-breakdown and triggered operation modes were investigated when the switch was filled with the selected gases (“Zero grade” air, N2, CO2, and a 90%/10% Ar/O2 mixture) with pressures up to 12 bar (gauge). The obtained experimental data and their statistical analysis allowed for a comprehensive analysis of different operational parameters of the developed switch depending on the gas type, gas pressure and polarity of the applied voltage. Experimental results have been used in the development of computational models. These analytical results contribute to a further understanding the dynamic characteristics of gas-filled spark-gap switches. The developed models can be used to optimise the parameters of a plasma closing switch filled with environmentally friendly gases to improve its operational performance.
Advisor / supervisor
  • Timoshkin, Igor
Resource Type
Date Created
  • 2022