Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics
Type: Zeitschriftenaufsatz (reviewed)
Experimental investigations of the impact of resonant laser absorption by a tungsten inert gas welding arc in argon are presented. The intensity increase of the arc’s radiation between the laser entrance height and the anode are observed, as well as the variation of arc voltage due to the presence of the laser beam. High-speed camera recordings from different directions combined with absolutely calibrated spectroscopic measurements allow the reconstruction of the three-dimensional emission coefficient profiles without the assumption of axial symmetry. The obtained data are evaluated within the framework of local thermodynamic equilibrium. The local increase in the temperature and conductivity due to the influence of the laser is determined. Changes in the electrical conductivity obtained from the optical measurements coincide well with the measured voltage drop, and show significant redistribution of the current density profile near the anode in particular.