Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Engineering Physics

First Advisor

William F. Bailey, PhD


The purpose of this research was study shock wave interactions with argon glow discharges. Specifically, this thesis sought to answer whether it is possible to compress nonequilibrium electrons at the shock wave. The results in the thesis found that both equilibrium and nonequilibrium electrons could be compressed at the shock front. The double layer at the shock front, normalized by electron temperature, matched the calculated values for the double layer within a factor or two in all cases. The results also demonstrate that excited metastable states can be compressed at the shock front, as well. The culmination of this effort was to show that electrons can be compressed and that the double layer is orientated such that electrons do not gain energy from the shock front. This was done in order to help explain results by previous researchers in the area of plasma-shock wave interactions.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number