I am trying to make a small model internal combustion engine controlled electronically with an Arduino.
The idea is that fuel is injected and ignited with a small spark from a small high voltage transformer, such as the ones found in a plasma ball toy, or a cheap taser. The voltages on these are between 20 kV and 400 kV.
I am curious about how to effectively switch this on and off electronically. In particular, I noticed that the inductive coil feedback (am I saying that correctly?) results in a voltage spike on the low voltage side on connect/disconnect, so I actually manage to shock myself when, for example, I connect the input side by hand to a 5 V power supply.
Presumably this will be a problem if I try to switch it using a normal transistor-based solid-state system? Should I be using something like a reed relay? How should I prevent the "input-side" voltage spikes from damaging the other electronics connected to the power supply?