Microplasmas: sources, particle kinetics, and biomedical applications

Thanks to their portability and the non-equilibrium character of the discharges, microplasmas are finding application in many scientific disciplines. Although microplasma research has traditionally been application driven, microplasmas represent a new realm in plasma physics that still is not fully understood. This paper reviews existing microplasma sources and discusses charged particle kinetics in various microdischarges. The non-equilibrium character highlighted in this manuscript raises concerns about the accuracy of fluid models and should trigger further kinetic studies of high-pressure microdischarges. Finally, an outlook is presented on the biomedical application of microplasmas.