Reviews of topical problems

Ecton or electron avalanche from metal

Lebedev Physical Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, Leninsky prosp. 53, Moscow, 119991, Russian Federation

The so-called explosive electron emission observed as individual packets or avalanches of electrons is shown to occur in microexplosions at the cathode. This microexplosion of electrons is called an ecton. Electron current in an ecton starts to flow as a result of the overheating of metal because of the high energy density (104 J g-1), and the current stops owing to the cooling of the emission zone. Ectons occur in electrical discharges in vacuum, in cathode spots of a vacuum arc, in bulk discharges in gases, in pseudo-spark discharges, in corona discharges, etc.

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Fulltext is also available at DOI: 10.1070/PU1995v038n06ABEH000089
PACS: 79.90.+b
DOI: 10.1070/PU1995v038n06ABEH000089
Citation: Mesyats G A "Ecton or electron avalanche from metal" Phys. Usp. 38 567–590 (1995)
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:    « —  » 165 601–626 (1995); DOI: 10.3367/UFNr.0165.199506a.0601

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