Plasmas are used in many technical fields. For instance, plasma assisted technologies are used to modify, clean or coat surfaces. It is essential for the quality of such a process to know the plasma state. Here, the plasma parameters are not only measured, but also used for the control of the process. Existing methods do not meet all of the industrial requirements and are complex and costly.
A German university offers a new solution with optimised features. The novel plasma sensor is based on the so-called active plasma resonance spectroscopy, whereby the sensor itself is flush-mounted in the wall of the reactor and thus does not affect the process. An integrated balun allows the sensor to be powered by a simple coaxial cable.
The plasma sensor can be used in most industrial plasma processes as long as no conductive layers are deposited. The sensor can measure the plasma parameters, in particular the plasma electron frequency, and provide the values for an active control and thus significantly improve the quality of the process. Since the sensor is integrated into the reactor wall, no great technical effort for installation is necessary.
Industrial licensees active in surface treatment are sought. The partner should contribute to develop the technology further and implement it.