The application of an optical method for density measurements in cylindrical plasmas is described. The angular deviation of a probing light beam sent through a plasma is proportional to the maximum of the density in the plasma column. The deviation does not depend on the plasma dimensions; however, it is influenced to a certain degree by the density profile. The method is successfully applied to the investigation of a dense plasma focus with a time resolution of 2 nsec and a spatial resolution (in axial direction) of 2 mm.
© 1978 Optical Society of America
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