Numerical analysis of direct-current (DC) plasma processing for high-efficient steel surface modification

Xinyang Wei, Fangda Xu, Adam Bennett, Julian Swan, Jamie Pulsford, Guoda Chen, Nan Yu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nowadays, direct-current (dc) non-transferred arc plasma torch has drawn significant interest from both academia and industry due to the capability to process products in an efficient and convenient way. The core of this technology is to clarify and manipulate the arc behavior at the interior of the dc plasma torch to produce ideal plasma jets for processing. To solve this problem, a quasi-steady axisymmetric model is built to simulate and compare the arc characteristics in different operating conditions and different nozzle structures of the plasma torch. The results uncover distinct aspects of the study on arc characteristics, including the detection of the primary arc attachment region and its spatial features caused by the choking effect of torch structure. The thermal efficiency focused on processing substrate is also calculated in this paper for estimating the performance of plasma processing. The calculated results show that increasing the mass flow rate brings better thermal efficiency and the greatest promotion is at least 6% in the same current value, whereas improving the arc current value causes the opposite result. Meanwhile, two types of nozzle are compared to the original design in thermal efficiency, where the wide nozzle is chosen for torch optimization due to its best power efficiency. The secondary arc attachment on the metal substrate is discovered though its impact scope is only within a radius of 10 mm from the torch axis, its effect on the processing could be ignored for the extremely low electric current value.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2215-2228
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology
Issue number7-8
Early online date8 Dec 2022
Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2023


  • Arc characteristics
  • Computational fluid dynamics
  • Plasma torch
  • Thermal efficiency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Software
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Numerical analysis of direct-current (DC) plasma processing for high-efficient steel surface modification'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this