Surface discharge plasma induced by spontaneous polarization switching

D. Shur*, G. Rosenman, Ya E. Krasik

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A flashover plasma has been induced by spontaneous polarization switching on a polar surface of the ferroelectric crystal triglycine sulphate (TGS). The effect has not been observed in the paraelectric phase. The threshold switching voltage for a surface flashover ignition was as low as 100 V for pulsed and ac voltage. A mechanism of plasma initiation on a ferroelectric surface is proposed. It is assumed that the plasma is ignited by electron emission initiated by polarization switching. Subsequent electron avalanching occurs as a result of the high potential gradient along the ferroelectric surface caused by inhomogeneous polarization switching. Electrons and ions with energies up to several hundreds of eV were been recorded due to a high surface potential of the switched ferroelectric.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)574-576
Number of pages3
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number5
StatePublished - 3 Feb 1997


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