Resonant RF network antennas for large-area and large-volume inductively coupled plasma sources
Large-area and large-volume radio frequency (RF) plasmas are produced by different arrangements of an elementary electrical mesh consisting of two conductors interconnected by a capacitor at each end. The obtained cylindrical and planar RF networks are resonant and generate very high RF currents. The input impedance of such RF networks shows the behaviour of an RLC parallel resonance equivalent circuit. The real impedance at the resonance frequency is of great advantage for power matching compared with conventional inductive devices. Changes in the RLC equivalent circuit during the observed E-H transition will allow future interpretation of the plasma-antenna coupling. Furthermore, high power transfer efficiencies are found during inductively coupled plasma (ICP) operation. For the planar RF antenna network it is shown that the E-H transition occurs simultaneously over the entire antenna. The underlying physics of these discharges induced by the resonant RF network antenna is found to be identical to that of the conventional ICP devices described in the literature. The resonant RF network antenna is a new versatile plasma source, which can be adapted to applications in industry and research.