Using a recently developed numerical procedure for the solution of energy and magnetic flux density equations for inductively coupled plasma (ICP) discharges with diatomic gases, we made a theoretical comparison of ICP discharges in argon and nitrogen with the objective of evaluating their relative spectrochemical usefulness. Nitrogen discharges operating at powers between 3 and 7 kW and argon discharges of powers between 0.6 and 6 kW are investigated for a three-concentric gas flow arrangement now popular in spectrochemical analysis. Although the argon discharge temperatures are higher and the linear velocity of the central gas stream lower, nitrogen provides a more effective discharge for decomposition of Al2O3 particles. Two-dimensional temperature distributions, velocity profiles, and power loss relationships are described.
Ramon M. Barnes and Seifollah Nikdel, "Computer Simulation of Inductively Coupled Plasma Discharge for Spectrochemical Analysis. II. Comparison of Temperature and Velocity Profiles, and Particle Decomposition for Inductively Coupled Plasma Discharges in Argon and Nitrogen," Appl. Spectrosc. 30, 310-320 (1976)