Underwater electrical wire explosions as an attractive method to study High Energy Density Physics

TYPEStudent Seminar
Speaker:Daniel Maler
Affiliation:Physics, Technion
Organizer:Prof. Yakov Krasik
Location:Lidow 620

Underwater electrical wire explosions have proven to be an effective method for studying matter under extreme conditions, a key area of research in High Energy Density Physics. Pulse generators discharge high currents and current densities on nanosecond to microsecond timescales through metal wires in various geometrical configurations. This results in rapid Ohmic heating accompanied by solid state-liquid-vapor phase transitions, ultimately forming a low-ionized, weakly coupled non-ideal plasma. Additionally, due to wire radial expansion, these explosions produce strong shock waves in water. A common approach to study matter under extreme conditions involves accelerating flyer plates to high velocities and having them impact a material of interest, generating strong shock waves within the sample. This research utilized underwater exploding wires and their resultant shock waves to accelerate flyer plates to high velocities, demonstrating efficient energy conversion between stored energy and the kinetic energy of the flyer. The approach was thoroughly investigated, focusing on the interaction of the shock wave with the target and the resulting dynamics. Additionally, exploding wire arrays with cylindrical symmetry were used to generate supersonic water jets, examining their properties, velocity optimization, and formation mechanisms. These water jets were also employed in experiments to explore their potential for high energy density physics research.