Physics Department Seminar: Prof. Klaus-Dieter Weltman, Leibniz Institute for Plasma Science and Technology e.V.

Plasma Sources in life science

Wednesday, December 4, 2013 ( 11:00 am to 1:00 pm )

Location: Morton 103


Plasma applications in life science gain more and more interest. However, concepts of tailor-made plasma sources which meet the technical requirements for biomedical devices are still insufficiently developed. Especially for therapheutic purposes the proposed selectivity of plasma action implies an accurate control of the performance parameters of the plasma sources regarding the treatment efficiency as well as potential risks connected with the direct application of plasma to cells or living tissue. In this context, plasma sources are mostly characterized with regard to special biological effects, e.g. antimicrobial efficiency or cell manipulation, to evaluate potential therapeutic benefits and specific adverse or toxic side effects in the close cell and tissue environment. But it is also essential to perform a comprehensive assessment of the general risk factors to clarify minimum standards for plasma sources for biomedical applications and for comparison of different sources. From the present point of view such risk factors are plasma temperature, thermal load, UV radiation, electromagnetic fields, radicals and the generation of toxic gases. The mix of these parameters has to be adapted individually for each application. This is not only true for biomedical issues, but also for other applications like exhaust gas cleaning. 

Regarding the manageability in everyday medical life, atmospheric pressure plasma jets (APPJ) and dielectric barrier discharges (DBD) are of special interest. But the determination of discharge development and plasma parameters is sometimes challenging, due the high complexity and limited diagnostic approaches – the plasmas are usually small scale, constricted or filamentary, and transient. Furthermore, working on open air atmospheres, an input of nitrogen, oxygen and water implying complex plasma chemistry must be expected. Therefore, a great deal of effort combining experimental investigation and modeling will be necessary to provide the required knowledge on plasma sources for biomedical applications. The talk gives an overview about the use of plasma sources in general their characteristics and special applications in life science.



Klaus-Dieter Weltmann received the diploma degree in electronics and the doctorate degree (Dr. rer. nat) in applied physics from the University of Greifswald, Germany, in 1989 and 1993, respectively. He worked on nonlinear dynamics in low temperature plasmas and plasma diagnostics. In 1994, he was Visiting Scientist at the Plasma Physics Laboratory, West Virginia University (USA). In 1995, he joined ABB Corporate Research Ltd., Baden-Dättwil, Switzerland, working in the development of high-voltage (HV) and medium-voltage (MV) switchgear. In 1998, he became the head of High Voltage Systems Group, ABB Corporate Research Ltd. In 2000, he was appointed to lead R&D of Gas Insulated Switchgear (GIS, PASS) at ABB High Voltage Technologies Ltd., Zurich, Switzerland, 2002 he became Business Unit R&D Manager GIS. Since 2003 he is director of the Leibniz Institute for Plasma Science and Technology e.V. (INP Greifswald) as well as professor for experimental physics at the Ernst-Moritz-Arndt-University Greifswald. His present research interests include MV and HV switchgear, gas discharges at atmospheric pressure, nonlinear dynamics, and plasma medicine.