Theory, experiments and calculations related the physics of plasmas, i.e., matter constituted by ionized atoms.

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What materials are used in non thermal plasma?

While reading about non-thermal plasmas, I came across their ionization potentials(~1%), and other capabilities, such as their non Maxwellian energy distributions. At what temperatures, and pressures ...
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153 views

Integrating Factor Solution for Plasma Wave Equation

As part of a derivation in Bernstein '58 [1] a linear first-order (eqn. (9) in the image) appears: But the general solution I would usually take (as appears in Gradshteyn and Ryzhik and checked in ...
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1answer
540 views

Child-Langmuir Space Charge Law for Non-Zero Cathode Potential (Non-Zero Initial Electron Velocity)

I'm trying to reconcile some conflicting results that I've found in publications that address the idea of the current in a vacuum diode in the case where the cathode has a non-zero potential, in other ...
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1answer
37 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: ...
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1answer
43 views

spectrum of discharge of air

Where do the various colors in electrical discharge of air with a high voltage originate from? Are these transitions in ionized nitrogen gas or unionized gas? Are chemical reactions involved? I assume ...
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1answer
42 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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1answer
93 views

polarization of a transverse wave travelling in ionosphere with polarization direction perpendicular to earths magnetic field

Assume a transverse electromagnetic wave entering ionosphere such that its Electric field of wave is perpendicular to earths magnetic field. Now, i read that as it will enter plasma, the wave will ...
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1answer
56 views

How do I find the partition functions for the Saha equation for elements that are complex like Argon?

The question I have is with regards to the partition function needed for solving the Saha equation for Argon. Basically the part I'm confused with is the part of the formula where $g_i/g_a$, where ...
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1answer
25 views

plasma and infinite acceleration

I am trying to set up a simulation of particles (they are not any particular kinds of particles, they are just points that repel each other). All the particles repel each other through the inverse ...
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1answer
74 views

Fermi velocity $v_F$ and speed of light

Can Fermi velocity $v_F$ be equal to speed of light, $c$, for ultra-relativistic electron plasma waves, in plasma physics, by using Fermi-Dirac distribution function?
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280 views

Who invented the term “Coulomb logarithm”?

Who is the author of the term "Coulomb logarithm"? In fact, Coulomb logarithm was computed by Langmuir in his paper of 1928 where the term "plasma" was introduced into physics, but the term "Coulomb ...
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34 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 ...
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56 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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83 views

nuclear fusion scaling with reactor size

Thinking about physics of thermonuclear fusion, I have always intuitive sense, that making fusion feasible is matter of reactor size. In other words I feel like: if the fusion reactor is big enough ...
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0answers
21 views

Why do the high curvature bends in CFLs have their phosphor coating erode?

I have this pretty old compact fluorescent (CFL) bulb from several years ago still going strong. There was a period where the bulb sat unused when I moved away from home and put the lamp in storage. ...
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0answers
42 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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23 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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101 views

Calculating the magnetic permeability of a known plasma

I have a plasma, of which I know the composition, temperature, exact electron/ion/particle densities. How can I then calculate a theoretical permeability of the plasma. Is this even possible? I ...
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0answers
68 views

Particle acceleration at magnetized shocks by convective electric fields?

Let us assume we have a flow of charged particles in a quasi-neutral state (i.e., a plasma) convecting at some speed, $\mathbf{V}_{sw}$ = V$_{sw}$ $\hat{x}$, and the particles have species-dependent ...
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97 views

After quantization of electron vibrations, do we need electrons anyway?

The title question is not ment in a general context, but one in which goes to the plasmon theory. In that case, how is are the statistics (boson vs. fermions) of plasmons determined? And is there an ...
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21 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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35 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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65 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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22 views

How does electron positron plasma act compared to normal plasma?

When an electron positron plasma is formed, will it react to magnetic fields the same way? With the gamma ray photons resulting from the annihilation, would the plasma be of greater energy? Thanks!
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Boltzmann factor predicts arbitrarily large numbers of electrons at high potential?

In deriving the Debye shielding length we are told that the Boltzmann factor for particles of charge $q$ is: $n_{q}=n_{0}\exp(-q\phi/kT)$ If we assume the potential $\phi$ is positive, then the ...
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61 views

Physical reason for magnetic mirroring?

I understand the mathematical derivation of magnetic mirroring, which usually starts from the conservation of the magnetic dipole moment (e.g. in a plasma). But physically: a mirrored particle is ...
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176 views

Intensive radiative heat transfer in very hot gas ( >5000K, gas core nuclear reactor related )

The question: At temperatures above ~5000K are not stable any solid or liquid materials or even more complex molecules (such as fullerenes and Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) which emit/absorb ...
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27 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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11 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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10 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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13 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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38 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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14 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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20 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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34 views

What about the Electric energy density of the toroid?

But what about $U_{E}$, the electric field energy density?
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15 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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29 views

Production of Inductively Coupled Plasma

I am working on an experiment hat requires the usage of inductively coupled plasma, but unfortunately, I do not have any equipment at the moment that can produce such plasma, and I really need your ...
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29 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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24 views

Finite Value of Cross Section of (Scattering/Absorption) of Localized Surface Plasmon at Resonance

According to textbook written by Stefan A. Maier, ch.5, p.70, cross section of scattering and absorption are defined as: $$C_{sca}=\frac{8\pi}{3}k^4a^6 ...
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37 views

Calculate energy-density of known plasma in microwave?

Let's assume I want to create a plasma in a regular household microwave similar to this home-made experiment. Although I am dealing with a small amount of mass, I assume that the addition of microwave ...
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110 views

Electrostatic ion thruster neutralizers

All electrostatic Ion thrusters have a neutralizer electron beam, but why are they required? Is avoiding the accumulation of negative charge the only reason? I would've thought that the main reason ...
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100 views

Magnetic fields in plasma at equilibrium

I'm wondering if it is possible to have a plasma reach an equilibrium state where no more entropy is produced but it still has frozen-in magnetic field lines. The problem is the field lines have a ...
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37 views

Calculate the potential induced by beam

This exercise is from Plasma Physics and Fusion Energy by Freidberg. A cylindrical conducting vacuum chamber of radius $r=a$ is filled with a uniform plasma of density $n_0$ and temperature ...
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51 views

Fusion plasma compression with liquid metal

General Fusion plans to use an imploding shockwave of molten lead to compress a magnetized plasma "spheromak" target in order to make it burn more efficiently. How come the lead does not quench the ...
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50 views

Under what conditions is it possible to ionize atoms using an electron gun?

Using the electron bombardment method, if I wanted to ionize, for example, Xenon gas electrons with an electron gun, under what conditions is it possible to do so? (Heat, pressure?)