Influence of the anode material on the characteristics of an analytical glow discharge cell

V. Efimova, A. Derzsi, A. Zlotorowicz, V. Hoffmann, Z. Donkó, J. Eckert

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The energy transfer to the discharge gas due to various collision processes in the plasma and the heating of the sample are widely known effects in glow discharge (GD) spectroscopy. Despite of the considerable thermal effects and their serious influence on the performance of GD devices, measurements of the discharge gas and sample temperatures are not common at all. The gas temperature depends on the power absorption of the discharge as well as on the temperature of boundaries (sample and anode). In this work the influence of different anode materials in a Grimm-type source on the voltage-current characteristics, crater shapes and GD spectra is investigated. Anodes made of titanium and copper alloys, graphite, and steel with thermal conductivities covering a wide range of values are used. For a fixed voltage and pressure a decrease of the measured current is observed for bad thermal conductive anodes. Cooling of the sample results in an increase of the measured current. Both observations can be explained by changes of the discharge gas temperature. The temperature of the sample is measured from the back side and compared for different anodes. Further, it is found that the choice of the anode material (i) has no significant influence on the crater shape, (ii) results in slightly different sputtering rates and (iii) strong differences of the GD spectra.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)311-315
Number of pages5
JournalSpectrochimica Acta - Part B Atomic Spectroscopy
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2010



  • Anode material
  • Cathode temperature
  • Gas heating
  • Glow discharge spectroscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Instrumentation
  • Spectroscopy

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