A source for the continous production of neutral metastable atoms is described. A hollow cathode discharge tube was used to produce densities of 3.5 × 1013 cm−3 and column densities of 1.6×1015 cm−2 in the 4s2 2D metastable term of neutral copper. The accuracy of these density determinations (±30 to ±66%) is limited by the oscillator strengths required for the analysis. The usefulness of the source was demonstrated by measurements of relative oscillator strengths of some Cu I lines in the 2200-Å wavelength region. These data are compared with those obtained by other methods.
© 1979 Optical Society of America
Gabriel G. Lombardi, Peter L. Smith, and W. H. Parkinson, "High current hollow cathode tube as a source of metastable atoms," J. Opt. Soc. Am. 69, 1289-1291 (1979)