Theory, lab and space experiments, and calculations related the physics of [plasmas](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plasma_(physics)), i.e., matter constituted by [ionized atoms](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ion).

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Would a mass of bare iron nuclei be visible ?

As I understand it most of how objects look is because of how photons interact with electrons and photons emitted when excited electrons fall to lower energy levels producing photons. So if one traps ...
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100 views

Liquid/solid to plasma?

During a phase change we can go from solid to gas via the process of sublimation. The diagram given below indicates that there is no analogous process for the transition from solid (or liquid) to ...
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44 views

Why is the enclosed area of a voltage-charge Lissajous figure to the dissipated energy per cycle?

These Lissajous figures turn up in the study of Dielectric Barrier Discharges driven by AC voltages, but I believe the concept of the "dissipated energy=area enclosed curve" is much more general. By ...
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54 views

What is crater's influence on laser ablation?

In many laser ablation experiments (especially Pulsed Laser Deposition), target is moving to avoid crater formation. But I can't find any source that says why it is needed to avoid it. So why is ...
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1answer
91 views

What is meant by infinite wavelength?

1#When an electromagnetic wave propagates in a plasma, with increase in plasma density the phase velocity ($v=\frac{\omega}{k}$) of wave increases. So at cut-off point $k=0$, and phase velocity ...
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92 views

The basic physics behind the plasma frequency

The dispersion relation of ordinary wave in plasma is \begin{equation} \omega^2=\omega_{p}^{2}+c^{2}k^{2}, \end{equation} where $\omega_{p}=\sqrt{{4\pi n_{0}e^{2}}/{m}}$ is the plasma frequency. ...
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37 views

plasma frequency in terms of thermal energy

The relativistic factor (in terms of momentum) is given by \begin{equation}\label{} \gamma=1/\sqrt{1-v^{2}/c^{2}}=\sqrt{1+p^{2}/m^{2}_{0}c^{2}}, \end{equation} When thermal momentum is greater ...
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48 views

Can a spheromak propagate in vacuum?

I recently learned about (and am now fascinated by) spheromaks. I am no expert on plasma physics, but as I understand they are analogous to propagating toroidal vortices (smoke rings), but with plasma ...
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108 views

What defines a cold plasma?

Been looking for this very simple answer for a while now, and google returns a face cream with the words cold plasma in it. Very frustrated. Just wondering, what constitutes a cold plasma in the ...
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64 views

How much do we know about the characteristic time for electron-ion recombination for a dense plasma?

As mentioned, how much do we know about the characteristic time for electron-ion recombination for a dense (noble gas) plasma (i.e. density of electrons at $\approx 10^{21} \textrm{cm}^{-3}$) at $...
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41 views

The change of length of positive column in glow discharge

When I was doing the experiment of glow discharge, I lowered the voltage between electrodes and find that the length of positive column will increased quickly around a certain voltage(the interval of ...
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50 views

Pair correlation function of the QHE “plasma”

I am trying to teach myself the theory of quantum Hall effect, and realized that I can not reproduce a basic textbook result. Let me closely follow Girvin's Les Houches lectures (http://arxiv.org/abs/...
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89 views

What is the effective electron mass in a plasma?

Is there a way to calculate the effective electron mass in plasmas? Effective electron mass is usually defined as varying from the vacuum electron mass in solid state physics. However, momentum ...
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14 views

Generation of negative ions in air [duplicate]

What is the main physical mechanism behind the generation of negative ions in air by a high negative voltage electrode ?
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2answers
99 views

Limitations of particle in cell method for high desnity plasma

Are there any limitations of particle in cell (PIC) method for high density plasma? To be more specific, is modelling of a narrow channel of high density plasma possible or are there any limitations ...
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1answer
249 views

Does matter found at densities of white dwarfs “feel” more like a solid, liquid or gas?

I'm wondering what it would be like to touch or interact with very dense degenerate matter like this found at white dwarfs. I understand that white dwarfs are initially very hot, but for the sake of ...
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59 views

How much of the Solar convection zone is completely ionized?

I was reading about the energy transportation in stars here, and I found this: "The outer portion of solar mass stars is cool enough that hydrogen is neutral and thus opaque to ultraviolet photons, so ...
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48 views

Fire: Understanding the states of matter and its mass

If the fire is a state of matter (plasma) and every matter has mass. My question is: how we can calculate the mass of a fire?
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35 views

How do you calculate the brightness of an electronic arc through a gas?

Quick question: I want to model the brightness of a xenon flash tube when a capacitor is discharged through it, but I can not find any equations related to this. It only has to be a rough model, just ...
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50 views

Does venus have plasma in its atmosphere?

Is it hot enough on Venus for thermal collisions to ionize molecules? If not, what temperature would it have to be?
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88 views

How does a Pulsed Plasma Thuster work?

My friend was describing a Pulsed Plasma Thruster (PPT) to me, and we couldn't figure out how it actually worked. The setup involves two conducting plates with a potential difference and a solid, ...
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58 views

Why can xenon gas stay ionised after the “trigger voltage” is removed?

From my understanding of a Xenon flash circuit, a storage capacitor and a trigger capacitor are charged up to about 240V (both with similar RC values, but less capacitance is needed for the trigger ...
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72 views

What happens to Hydrogen-Boron plasma at 3 billion Kelvin?

A recent popular report states (beware, I believe it is not peer reviewed and this slightly smells like a PR stunt) that a private company TriAlpha has made some notable progress towards Hydrogen-...
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71 views

Units in Plasma Physics

What are the units people use in plasma physics? I am having hard time converting an equation from an old paper to SI units. I saw temperature being defined in $eV$. I assume this is $eV/k_B$ with $...
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69 views

What is the role of the Cowling, Pedersen and Hall resistivities (or conductivities) in plasma physics?

The current density $\vec{j}$ can be computed as $\vec{j} = \vec{\vec{\sigma}} \vec{E}$, where $\vec{\vec{\sigma}}$ is the conductivity tensor and $\vec{E}$ is the electric field. This conductivity ...
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1answer
125 views

Using ion beam to create strong magnetic field

Consider, I want to make very strong magnetic field in some spot in space ( focus ) but I cannot put any solid material ( like metal conductor, or superconductor ) close to that spot (e.g. because ...
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86 views

Is thermal and electrical conductivity correlated for all phases of matter?

After reading this interesting post about why copper is a great heat conductor, I wondered if a plasma would conduct heat better than a gas. Or, are some properties like density more important for ...
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76 views

Electron beam in magnetic field - increase or decrease the field?

When I fire an electron beam into homogenous magnetic field ( eg. inside Helmholtz coil ) it will bend into a circle => it will form a coil ( = current loop ) itself. The magnetic field created by ...
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1answer
51 views

Induction equation in a rotating frame

In his book, Tom Cravens refers to the induction equation (perfectly conducting limit) in a rotating frame, the Sun. See link below: https://books.google.com/books?id=xw50iZep-McC&pg=PA222&...
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15 views

Measured versus Predicted Energy gain in Tokamaks with size

Does there exist a known relationship between the energy gain of Tokamaks in dependence of their size? How do fusion engineers can predict how much gain will a given Tokamak size deliver? Do they just ...
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25 views

What is the resistance of ionised Xenon gas?

I need to know the typical resistance of ionised xenon gas inside a xenon flash tube, so I can use circuit analysis to calculate the flash duration. I know that a 180uF capacitor is charged to ...
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70 views

Geometry of magnetic field lines in plasmas/MHD

So I'm trying to gain an intuitive grasp of plasmas and magnetohydrodynamics. There's a couple of questions I have. What does it means magnetic field lines are frozen into "plasmas"? Is it that ...
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133 views

How to calculate electrical and thermal conductivity, enthalpy and density of plasma column in air for a series electric arc?

I am modeling an electric arc according to "Lowke's Simple theory of free burning arc". Its a very interesting theoretical arc model and I want to implement it in Matlab/Simulink. But here, the arc ...
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450 views

Book suggestion for introductory plasma physics

I have an undergraduate background of electrodynamics, special theory of relativity and quantum mechanics. I would like to study plasma physics by myself so please suggest a few introductory books on ...
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20 views

why is clear electron saturation not obtained in a Langmuir probe experiment?

I recently conducted an experiment to study the I-V characteristics of a Debye sheath, but I can't obtain electron saturation. Why does it happen?
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192 views

Is magnetic reconnection reconcilable with magnetic field lines neither starting nor ending?

According to Maxwell's equations, magnetic fields are divergence-free: $\nabla \cdot \mathbf{B} = 0$. If I understand this correctly, this means that magnetic field lines do not start or end. How can ...
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1answer
135 views

What happens to charge during laser ablation in water?

One of my friends from lab makes gold nanoparticles in the following manner: He puts a gold plate in water (without surfactants or other additives) He fires laser at the plate After 5 minutes ...
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25 views

Are x-rays in fusion plasmas mostly from collisions with high atomic number ions?

Say you have a hot (100eV-1keV) hydrogen plasma with no impurities in it and no collisional interaction with the wall. Would this plasma radiate x-rays? X-rays are from bremsstrahlung, so could ...
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54 views

Is plasma an intermediate stage of matter? [duplicate]

Can it truly be called a stable state? Fire is stable while it has fuel but isn't it really just a transition point for solid to gas?
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1answer
106 views

How do I calculate the energy flux for this toroid?

My question is how do i calculate the total energy flux through the walls of the torus in this situation? The Poynting flux is given by $\vec{N} = \frac{1}{\mu} ( \vec{E} \times \vec{B})$ but the $\...
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88 views

What about the Electric energy density of the toroid?

But what about $U_{E}$, the electric field energy density?
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1answer
158 views

Difference between fusion plasma and fluorescent lamp plasmas

How is the plasma in a compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) different from a plasma in say ITER or the sun? Why does ITER need 100MK and a CFL can work at practically room temperature (apart from the ...
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1answer
201 views

Real life physics problem: Why is my desktop computer affected by my plasma ball?

Note: this is strictly a physics question, not meant to be an advertisement I was running my desktop with a plasma ball on the side. The desktop has a touch screen enabled. I started to notice that ...
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29 views

What is the effect of a magnetic field on a plasma speaker?

I have been doing some research for the past couple years investigating the effect of a magnetic field on a plasma speaker. More specifically, if you apply a relatively uniform magnetic field in no ...
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189 views

Plasma wakefield acceleration for Protons

Laser plasma acceleration is a promising technology that could replace the current method of accelerating particles (which is via electric fields). It is somewhat cheaper also as it makes the ...
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26 views

Why are low m,n modes more dominant?

Consider an axially symmetric, toroidal, magnetized plasma with some safety factor (q) profile. A flux surface has q=m/n where m is the number of toroidal transits and n is the number of poloidal ...
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52 views

Betatron vs Fermi acceleration

According to the reference below, the plasma in a planetary radiation belt increases its temperature anisotropy through radial diffusion; temperature perpendicular to the background magnetic field ...
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474 views

What's the difference between “Ohmic dissipation”, “Joule heating”, “ion drag” and “resistive heating”?

The following terms are sometimes used to refer to ... more or less ... the same thing by different people and in different contexts (electronic circuits vs. plasma physics, etc.): Ohmic ...
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67 views

Why do rings form on microwaved CD/DVDs?

Here's a microwaved CD. As you can see, the disc has been destroyed, but there are very clear circular rings bridged with lines. Why are rings formed when microwaving discs?
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425 views

How does the sun's surface conduct thermal energy from the convective zone to the corona?

How does the surface of the photosphere conduct thermal energy from the convective zone to the corona, while remaining at such a relatively low temperature itself? It seems odd to me that the ...