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Elementary Space Plasma Physics

Elementary Space Plasma Physics

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  • ISBN-13: 9789868270954
  • Publisher: Airiti Press
  • Release Date: Dec 20, 2010
  • Pages: 216 pages
  • Dimensions: 0.46 x 11.02 x 8.27 inches


The characteristic scale lengths of various space plasma phenomena range from the electron inertial length to the magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) scale length. The MHD plasma model in the space physics is like the geostrophic-wind approximation in the atmospheric physics. Both of them have the limitation in their applications. One of the important goals of this book is to show the students how scientists obtain the governing equations of a given plasma model and what assumptions have been made to obtain the set of governing equations shown in the literatures. We believe that, unless the students know how to derive the governing equations and how to obtain the wave mode from a simplified linear dispersion relation, it will be difficult for the students to fully understand the limitations of a given plasma model and to apply the right model for the observed phenomena. The basic equations of the kinetic plasma, the ion-electron two-fluid plasma, and the one-fluid plasma are derived at the beginning of this book. They are followed by the examinations of linear-wave dispersion relations in the ion-electron two-fluid plasma and in the one-fluid MHD plasma. The linear-wave dispersion relations in the kinetic plasma are presented at the end of this book. Because understanding the particle trajectories in the phase space are essential to the study of the wave-particle interactions in the kinetic plasma, the multiple-time-scale particle motions are examined before studying the linear-wave dispersion relations in the kinetic plasma. This book is written for a two-semester graduate course. It contains only the fundamental subjects in the plasma physics. Thus, an instructor can easily cover the entire book in two semesters. The basic equations derive in Chapters 2 and 3 are particularly useful in analyzing the space plasma data and in designing simulation codes for different plasma models. This book is of interest to students and researches in space physics, astrophysics, and laboratory plasma physics. Author: Ling-Hsiao Lyu Associate professor, Institute of Space Science & Department of Atmospheric Science National Central University. Ph.D., University of Alaska Fairbanks, USA, 1991. Research Specialties: Physics, Plasma Physics, Numerical Simulation

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