Microwave diagnostics of laser-induced small-volume plasma

Zhang Zhili, Mikhail N. Shneider, Richard B. Miles

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations


This work presents the preliminary results of an ongoing study of microwave scattering from a laser-induced, small-volume plasma in room air. Microwave scattering from the precursor and after-spark evolution reveal the dynamic characteristics of the laser spark formation, growth and decay. In particular, the avalanche ionization phase is detected by microwave scattering in the precursor part, during and shortly after the laser pulse. A simplified model of the microwave scattering from this early stage of laser breakdown is presented and shown to qualitatively fit the experimental results. Subsequent features of the microwave signal provide further insight into the after-spark evolution and are still under study. This work also discusses the possibilities and limitations of measuring the local electron number density by laser breakdown enhanced microwave scattering.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCollection of Technical Papers - 44th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting
Number of pages6
StatePublished - 2006
Event44th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting 2006 - Reno, NV, United States
Duration: Jan 9 2006Jan 12 2006

Publication series

NameCollection of Technical Papers - 44th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting


Other44th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting 2006
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityReno, NV

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Aerospace Engineering


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