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Wednesday, June 20, 2012
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
CNLS Conference Room (TA-3, Bldg 1690)


Derivation of Plasma Fluid Equations

Bruno Bauer
Univ Nevada-Reno Dept Physics

Plasma physics is of great importance for science and technology. All plasma follows a common set of principles, whether it is the tenuous plasma of interstellar space or the ultradense plasma created in inertial confinement fusion experiments; or whether it is the cool, chemical plasma used in the processing of semiconductors or the hot, thermonuclear plasma of stars and fusion devices. This second lecture of the Plasma Physics Summer School continues a broad outline of plasma physics. Starting with particle motion, we build distribution functions and derive kinetic equations. Taking velocity moments of the Boltzmann kinetic equation we reduce the dimensionality of the plasma description but increase the number of partial differential equations. Through suitable approximations, we obtain and close fluid equations, including those of magnetohydrodynamics. At every stage in this cascade of derivations, we should pause to solve our equations and admire a new perspective on the wondrous world of plasma equilibria, waves, and instabilities.

Host: Tom Intrator, P-24,, 665-2927