Geometrical aspects of a hollow-cathode planar magnetron

Zhehui Wang, Samuel A. Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


A hollow-cathode planar magnetron (HCPM), built by surrounding a planar sputtering-magnetron cathode with a hollow-cathode structure (HCS) [Z. Wang and S. A. Cohen, J. Vac. Sci. Technol. A 17, 77 (1999)], is operable at substantially lower pressures than its planar-magnetron counterpart. HCPM operational parameters depend on the inner diameter D and length L of its cylindrical HCS. Only when L is greater than L0, a critical length, is the HCPM operable in the new low-pressure regime. The critical length varies with HCS inner diameter D. Explanations of the lower operational pressure regime, critical length, and plasma shape are proposed and compared with a one-dimension diffusion model for energetic electron transport. At pressures above 1 mTorr, Bohm diffusion (temperature≅primary electron energy), with an ambipolar constraint, can explain the ion-electron pair creation required to sustain the discharge. At the lowest pressure, ∼0.3 mTorr, collision-limited diffusion creates fewer ion-electron pairs than required for steady state and therefore cannot explain the experimental data. The critical length L0 is consistent with the magnetization length of the primary electrons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1655-1666
Number of pages12
JournalPhysics of Plasmas
Issue number5 II
StatePublished - May 1999
EventProceedings of the 1998 40th Annual Meeting of the Division of Plasma Physics of the American Physical Society - New Orleans, LA, United States
Duration: Nov 16 1998Nov 20 1998

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics


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