We report measurements of time- and spatially averaged spontaneous-emission spectra following laser-induced breakdown on a solid graphite/ambient gas interface and on solid graphite in vacuum, and also emission spectra from gas-phase optical breakdown in allene C3H4 and helium, and in CO2 and helium mixtures. These emission spectra were dominated by CII (singly ionized carbon), CIII (doubly ionized carbon), hydrogen Balmer beta (H_beta), and Swan C2 band features. Using the local thermodynamic equilibrium and thin plasma assumptions, we derived electron number density and electron temperature estimates. The former was in the 1016 cm^-3 range, while the latter was found to be near 20000 K. In addition, the vibration-rotation temperature of the Swan bands of the C2 radical was determined to be between 4500 and 7000 K, using an exact theoretical model for simulating diatomic emission spectra. This temperature range is probably caused by the spatial inhomogeneity of the laser-induced plasma plume. Differences are pointed out in the role of ambient CO2 in a solid graphite target and in gas-phase breakdown plasma.
© 2005 Optical Society of America
László Nemes, Anna M. Keszler, James O. Hornkohl, and Christian G. Parigger, "Laser-induced carbon plasma emission spectroscopic measurements on solid targets and in gas-phase optical breakdown," Appl. Opt. 44, 3661-3667 (2005)