Fluorescence probes for study of insulator damage

Menzel, E. Roland; Hatfield, Lynn L.; Agarwal, Vijendra K.
December 1986
Applied Physics Letters;12/15/1986, Vol. 49 Issue 24, p1638
Academic Journal
We present an innovative approach to the study of electrical damage in insulators, involving laser excited fluorescence probes. Specimens first subjected to surface flashover in vacuum were stained with highly fluorescent dyes, chosen to have varied chemical properties, and examined under laser excitation. Surface flashover tracks, locations of corona discharge, and other features were readily revealed, even when no damage was visible to the naked eye. Our results indicate that chemical changes, charge distributions, and structural features arising from electrical, mechanical, and thermal stresses can be probed.


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