Electrical and thermal diagnostics for a better understanding of the energy balance of species in technological plasmas

This doctoral thesis explores the investigation of the energy balance of species in technological plasmas through the application of electrical and thermal diagnostics. The research focuses on advancing the understanding of the energy balance of species in plasmas by employing electrical, thermal, and optical diagnostics. Three previously published works are presented, highlighting the use of thermal and electrical diagnostics to analyze magnetron-sputtered thin films with highly specific applications. These publications demonstrate the significance of accurate diagnostic techniques in evaluating the behaviour of plasma-generated species and their effect on thin film properties such as morphology and structure. Additionally, a novel combined diagnostic approach is introduced, combining a thermal probe with a retarding field energy analyzer (RFEA). In this technique, the thermal probe serves as the collector for the RFEA, allowing simultaneous thermal and electrical measurements. The thesis describes the development of a prototype that provides proof of principle for the combined diagnostic and outlines the challenges and limitations encountered during the initial implementation. A new design addresses the limitations identified in the earlier stage and provides enhanced capabilities for studying plasma energy balance. The thesis thoroughly discusses the experimental setup, methodology, and data analysis procedures associated with the new combined diagnostic, illustrating its potential for advancing our understanding of species behaviour in technological plasmas.


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