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Magnetic Quenching Experiment

Due to the lack of a gauss meter to test the magnetic flux of the magnets used in this experiment, I will only attempt to show a general proof for magnetic quenching of spark gaps.

The configuration of the spark gap is as shown in figure 1.


Figure 1. Spark Gap
Click image to see a closer view

There are actually four magnets on the top.  There are the three visible 1½" diameter x 3/8" thick NIB magnets plus a 1" diameter x 3/8" NIB directly under the stack.  Underneath the pine board base are two 1½" x 1½" x 3/8" square NIB magnets.  These magnets were purchased from Forcefield.

The rods are thoriated tungsten and are ground flat at the gap.  The gap between the rods for this experiment is set for ½".  The six fiber blocks used to support the magnets are about 3/8" thick each.  The whole setup is held together by the attractive pull of the magnets.

In addition to the above spark gap, a 15kV, 30mA neon sign transformer (NST), 120 volt variac and test leads are used to assemble the circuit.  The high potential terminals of the NST are connected to the spark gap terminal rods.  

The first experiment uses the magnets for quenching the spark, as seen in the photo above.  The spark begins to jump the gap at 68 volt on the variac.  This means the potential from the transformer is about 8.505kV to start the spark.

The second experiment involves only the tungsten rods.  The magnets are completely removed from the spark gap.  In the second experiment the spark begins to jump the gap at about 73 volt on the variac.  This means the potential from the transformer is about 9.12kV to start the spark without the magnets.

Another observation is made in that the spark gap made a louder noise when the magnets were present than when the magnets were not present.  With the magnets the spark gap made loud "popping" noises while the spark gap without the magnets ran fairly smooth with little noise.  

The equation I use to understand this is:

Magnetic Flux

(Units are Quantum Units from the Aether Physics Model.)

The magnetic flux is unknown in this experiment because I don't have a gauss meter.  But the equation shows that as the potential decreases the time increases.  The time in this case is the quench time of the spark gap.  By adding magnetic flux to the spark gap the potential decreases and thus the quench time increases.  As the quench time increases, the overall system frequency would decrease.

When I get the proper tools, I'll do a more exhaustive study of magnetic quenching and quantify its relationship to the overall operation of a Tesla coil.