The European Physical Journal Applied Physics

Plasma, Discharges and Processes

Surface temperature measurement of a copper anode submitted to a non-stationary electric arc in air

Contribution to the assessment of the power balance

R. Landfrieda1 c1, T. Leblanca1, R. Andlauera1 and Ph. Testea1 c2

Laboratoire de Génie Electrique de Paris, SUPELEC, CNRS, Universités Paris VI et Paris XI, Plateau du Moulon, 91192 Gif-sur-Yvette Cedex, France


This work concerns the assessment of the surface temperature of copper anodes submitted to an electric arc in a non-stationary regime in air at atmospheric pressure. An infrared camera is used to measure the decrease of the surface temperature just after a very fast controlled arc extinction. Results are presented for different mean values of the arc current intensity (30, 70 and 130 A) with an electric arc duration in the range of 2–5 ms. The temperature decrease after the arc extinction allows an assessment of the surface temperature just at the moment of the arc switching off. In the present experimental conditions the mean temperatures reached for copper anodes are in the range of 750–1200 °C according to the arc current intensity values. Comparison between experimental results and a numerical modeling of the electrode heating allowed one to assess the surface power balance. The values for the volt equivalent are found about 12 V and the values for the surface power density are found to be near 2 × 109 W/m2.

(Received February 11 2011)

(Revised April 18 2011)

(Accepted July 27 2011)

(Online publication November 14 2011)