The fast propagation (v≊106 ms−1) of an ionized and thermalized channel (ne≊1018 cm−3, T≊2.8×104 K) is studied in ambient air at atmospheric pressure, using gliding discharges produced over a charged dielectric slab. For surface voltages of about 100 kV, 1‐m‐long gliding sparks follow a straight line without any preionization of the gas. In this way, the discharges can be investigated with full diagnostics, including measurements of the current and of the propagation velocity, recording of the light emission (electronic image converter, spectroscopy, Lichtenberg figures), holographic interferometry of the spark channels, and detection of transient electric fields by capacitive probes. The various measurements are synchronized from optical fiber devices located close to the sparks. The study shows that the thermalized spark channel is produced by the three following stages: (a) a predischarge stage where the electron temperature Te≊2 eV is much greater than the gas temperature T0<1500 K; (b) a transient arc stage, lasting about 10 ns where energy is transferred from the electric field to the gas ionization; and (c) a heating stage, lasting from 25 to 60 ns, where the electric field has been largely reduced.
The hho bubble would be at atmospheric pressure but is not ambient air, its oxygen and hydrogen and so will combust the final end product being water, pressure pulse, and a release of heat (with a volume reduction after event concludes).
As Mike commented about TK's video the spark appeared to follow the path of least resistance around the water droplet boundary layer. Would it do the same thing on the inside of the hho bubble ? The shortest distance is straight across between the two electrodes, so it will be interesting to find out what the actual behaviour is.
If the high voltage breaks through the first electrodes liquid water layer, would it then raise the electrostatic field strength of the gas hho bubble to a value that is high enough to break the second electrodes liquid water layer in order to complete the circuit and create an ionising spark path ?
If the high voltage must be raised to a value that is equal to the dielectric breakdown of the two liquid surface boundary layers on the electrode + the hho gas gap straight line distance how does the second electrode know that the value has been reached at the first electrode ?
Would the information travel around the hho gas bubble and liquid water interface (bubble surface) while the spark propogation is straight line shortest distance between the two electrodes ?
This experiment raises a lot of questions! Please feel free to chip in if anyone has any ideas on what would happen. Once the data has been gathered and the experiment observed in super slo mo the opportunity for musing in advance of evidence is gone.. and that can be where a lot of the fun is. Dielectric strengthhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dielectric_strength
In physics, the term dielectric strength has the following meanings:
Of an insulating material, the maximum electric field that a pure material can withstand under ideal conditions without breaking down (i.e., without experiencing failure of its insulating properties).
For a specific configuration of dielectric material and electrodes, the minimum applied electric field (i.e., the applied voltage divided by electrode separation distance) that results in breakdown.
The theoretical dielectric strength of a material is an intrinsic property of the bulk material and is independent of the configuration of the material or the electrodes with which the field is applied. This "intrinsic dielectric strength" corresponds to what would be measured using pure materials under ideal laboratory conditions. At breakdown, the electric field frees bound electrons. If the applied electric field is sufficiently high, free electrons from background radiation may become accelerated to velocities that can liberate additional electrons during collisions with neutral atoms or molecules in a process called avalanche breakdown. Breakdown occurs quite abruptly (typically in nanoseconds), resulting in the formation of an electrically conductive path and a disruptive discharge through the material. For solid materials, a breakdown event severely degrades, or even destroys, its insulating capability.
Factors affecting apparent dielectric strength
it decreases with increased sample thickness. (see "defects" below)
it decreases with increased operating temperature.
it decreases with increased frequency.
for gases (e.g. nitrogen, sulfur hexafluoride) it normally decreases with increased humidity.
for air, dielectric strength increases slightly as humidity increasesBreakdown field strength
The field strength at which breakdown occurs depends on the respective geometries of the dielectric (insulator) and the electrodes with which the electric field is applied, as well as the rate of increase at which the electric field is applied. Because dielectric materials usually contain minute defects, the practical dielectric strength will be a fraction of the intrinsic dielectric strength of an ideal, defect-free, material. Dielectric films tend to exhibit greater dielectric strength than thicker samples of the same material. For instance, the dielectric strength of silicon dioxide films of a few hundred nm to a few μm thick is approximately 0.5GV/m. However very thin layers (below, say, 100 nm) become partially conductive because of electron tunneling. Multiple layers of thin dielectric films are used where maximum practical dielectric strength is required, such as high voltage capacitors and pulse transformers. Since the dielectric strength of gases varies depending on the shape and configuration of the electrodes, it is usually measured as a fraction of the dielectric strength of Nitrogen gas.
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