When the electron density of a plasma generated in high pressure environment is measured by a conventional interferometer, the phase shifts due to changes of the neutral gas density cause significant measurement errors. A dispersion interferometer, which measures the phase shift that arises from dispersion of medium between the fundamental and the second harmonic wavelengths of laser light, can suppress the measured phase shift due to the variations of neutral gas density. In recent years, the CO2 laser dispersion interferometer has been applied to the atmospheric pressure plasmas and its feasibility has been demonstrated. By combining a low power laser and a high efficiency nonlinear crystal for the second harmonic component generation, a compact dispersion interferometer can be designed. The optical design and preliminary experiments are conducted.
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