Revisiting the numerical stability/accuracy conditions of explicit PIC/MCC simulations of low-temperature gas discharges

  • Particle-in-cell (PIC) with Monte Carlo collisions is a fully kinetic, particle based numerical simulation method with increasing popularity in the field of low temperature gas discharge physics. Already in its simplest form (electrostatic, one-dimensional geometry, and explicit time integration), it can properly describe a wide variety of complex, non-local, non-linear phenomena in electrical gas discharges at the microscopic level with high accuracy. However, being a numerical model working with discretized temporal and (partially) spatial coordinates, its stable and accurate operation largely depends on the choice of several model parameters. Starting from four selected base cases of capacitively coupled, radio frequency driven argon discharges, representing low and intermediate pressure and voltage situations, we discuss the effect of the variation of a set of simulation parameters on the plasma density distribution and the electron energy probability function. The simulation parameters include the temporal and spatial resolution, the PIC superparticle weight factor, as well as the electron reflection and the ion-induced electron emission coefficients, characterizing plasma–surface interactions.

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Author:Máté VassORCiDGND, P Palla, Peter HartmannORCiDGND
Parent Title (English):Plasma sources science and technology
Publisher:IOP Publishing
Place of publication:Bristol, Vereinigtes Königreich
Document Type:Article
Date of Publication (online):2024/02/09
Date of first Publication:2022/06/06
Publishing Institution:Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universitätsbibliothek
Tag:Monte Carlo collisions; PIC/MCC; numerical accuracy; numerical stability; particle-in-cell
Issue:6, Artikel 064001
First Page:064001-1
Last Page:064001-18
Dewey Decimal Classification:Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / Elektrotechnik, Elektronik
open_access (DINI-Set):open_access
faculties:Fakultät für Elektrotechnik und Informationstechnik
Licence (English):License LogoCreative Commons - CC BY 4.0 - Attribution 4.0 International