|Abstract: ||Switching devices are provided. The switching devices include an input
electrode, having a main electrode and a trigger electrode, and an output
electrode. The main electrode and the trigger electrode are separated
from the output electrode by a main gap and a trigger gap, respectively.
During operation, the trigger electrode compresses and amplifies a
trigger voltage signal causing the trigger electrode to emit a pulse of
energy. This pulse of energy form plasma near the trigger electrode,
either by arcing across the trigger gap, or by arcing from the trigger
electrode to the main electrode. This plasma decreases the breakdown
voltage of the main gap. Simultaneously, or near simultaneously, a main
voltage signal propagates through the main electrode. The main voltage
signal emits a main pulse of energy that arcs across the main gap while
the plasma formed by the trigger pulse is still present.