The field of microplasmas gained recognition as a well-defined area of research and application within the larger field of plasma science and technology about 20 years ago. Since then, the activity in microplasma research and applications has continuously increased. A survey of peer reviewed papers on microplasmas published annually shows a steady increase from fewer than 20 papers in 1995 to about 75 in 2005 and more than 150 in 2014. This count excludes papers that deal exclusively with technological applications where the microplasma is used solely as a tool. This topical review aims to provide a snap shot of the current state of microplasma research and applications. Given the rapid proliferation of microplasma applications, the topical review will focus primarily on the status of microplasma science and our understanding of the physics principles that enable microplasma operation. Where appropriate, we will also address microplasma applications, however, we will limit the discussion of microplasma applications to examples where the application is closely tied to the plasma science. No attempt is made to provide a comprehensive and in-depth review of the diverse range of all microplasma applications, except for the inclusion of a few key references to recent reviews of microplasma applications.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics