A team of researchers from the University of Uppsala in Sweden has designed a microplasma source capable of stimulating matter in a controlled way. This device can serve in a wide variety of fields, including archeology.
According to the researchers describe in Journal of Applied Physics (Journal of Applied Physics), produced by AIP Publishing, this new device offers many benefits, such as magnetic compatibility, an integrated fluid system, and Langmuir tests for plasma diagnostics.
At the Ångström Center for Space and Technology at Uppsala University, experts work with various micro and nanotechnology devices for use in space and under harsh conditions. For example, scientific instruments, images, communication hardware, vehicles, spacecraft, and thermal propulsion and control devices, the limitation of which is always a great challenge.
“Putting small hardware in orbit or thousands of meters underground is always easier and cheaper, but employing different technology for applications whose demand is increasing is usually rejected with skepticism. Therefore, we must compete with good results and ability to build trust”Says Greger Thornell, Director of the Ångström Center for Space and Technology.
Researchers are used to work with small machines such as sensors. The phenomena that take place in these devices sometimes involve high temperatures and pressures, in addition to intense plasma.
“In this case, the location, or rather the concentration, means that the device becomes more manageable and more efficient while consuming less, which broadens the applications for future requirements, or instruments of smaller size and weight.”Thornell explains.
Archeology is one of the most relevant applications today to help determine the distribution of carbon isotopes in organic samples. "This information is crucial for archaeologists, but calculating the distributions of these isotopes can be very laborious.”Says researcher Anders Persson.
The plasma source can be used to develop an instrument for archeology that would improve the productivity of experts. This would be a revolution, since it implies the diversification of the information available in the decision-making process in an excavation.
This study is not yet far advanced to evaluate the type of plasma source in an optogalvanic spectroscopy application. "So the next step is to optimize the ratios of the sound signals”Concludes Martin Berglund, a PhD student.
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