Title

Streamer Model for Ionization Growth in a Photoconductive Power Switch

Document Type

Article

Abstract

The ionization process in a high gain photoconductive Gaas power switch is explored computationally, based on a streamer model. The streamer velocity was found to increase with increasing electric field, decreasing temperature, or increasing background ionization density. The electric field dependence of streamer velocity is consistent with experimental observations, lending support for the model's predictions about the temperature and background ionization density dependencies. The large electric field associated with the highly charged streamer tip allows virtual propagation of the ionization column at speeds above 10(8) cm/s, well in excess of the carrier saturated drift velocity.

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