National Academies Press: OpenBook

Plasma Science: From Fundamental Research to Technological Applications (1995)

Chapter:Magnetically Trapped Particle Instabilities.

« Previous: Bernstein Waves.
Suggested Citation:"Magnetically Trapped Particle Instabilities.." National Research Council. 1995. Plasma Science: From Fundamental Research to Technological Applications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/4936.

Below is the uncorrected machine-read text of this chapter, intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text of each book. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

BASIC PLASMA EXPERIMENTS 134 no analogue in uncharged fluids, and they are therefore uniquely a plasma phenomenon. They are sensitive to kinetic effects and can be used as a diagnostic of plasma behavior as well as for plasma heating. An extensive body of knowledge has now been obtained from experiments that have used a variety of antennas and boundary conditions to elucidate the unusual properties of these modes. A wide variety of linear and nonlinear phenomena that involve Bernstein waves has been explored in the last decade, and they continue to be an important topic for basic research. Results from such studies have been used to interpret satellite observations of space plasmas. This knowledge has also been used to develop schemes for heating plasmas and for diagnosing plasma behavior. For example, there are potential applications using these waves to improve the stability and confinement properties of tokamak plasmas. However, an improved understanding of the nonlinear behavior of large-amplitude Bernstein waves will be required for such applications. Mode Conversion. Understanding mode conversion has been an important area of investigation in the last decade. In finite-temperature, spatially nonuniform plasmas, there can be degeneracy in the wave dispersion near plasma resonances, and mode conversion can occur near the spatial locations of these resonances. In particular, long-wavelength waves, which are often electromagnetic in character, can convert into electrostatic waves that then convect away the wave energy. Consequently, mode conversion can provide an important physical mechanism for absorption of the energy of electromagnetic waves. A variety of cases have now been studied, including the conversion of electromagnetic waves to Bernstein waves, Langmuir waves, lower and upper hybrid waves, and whistler waves. However, several important issues remain to be addressed. For example, although the linear transfer of energy has been observed, quantitative studies of the converted waves, the efficiency of energy transfer, and the associated electric field patterns have yet to be done, and theories of these phenomena have yet to be tested quantitatively. Understanding mode conversion is of great practical importance because of potential applications to plasma heating and use in plasma diagnostics. Wave-Particle Interactions Magnetically Trapped Particle Instabilities. The ubiquitous spatial nonuniformities of magnetic fields in laboratory and naturally occurring plasmas can cause the generation of two distinct populations of plasma particles: passing particles and mirror-trapped particles. Under very general conditions, the bounce motion of the trapped particles can result in the spontaneous amplification of various plasma modes. Recent experiments, based on an arrangement of multiple mirrors, have now elucidated the fundamental nature of these processes.

Next: Ponderomotive Forces and the Filamentation of Electromagnetic Radiation. »
Plasma Science: From Fundamental Research to Technological Applications Get This Book
Buy Paperback | $65.00 Buy Ebook | $54.99
MyNAP members save 10% online.
Login or Register to save!
Download Free PDF

Plasma science is the study of ionized states of matter. This book discusses the field's potential contributions to society and recommends actions that would optimize those contributions. It includes an assessment of the field's scientific and technological status as well as a discussion of broad themes such as fundamental plasma experiments, theoretical and computational plasma research, and plasma science education.

  1. ×

    Welcome to OpenBook!

    You're looking at OpenBook,'s online reading room since 1999. Based on feedback from you, our users, we've made some improvements that make it easier than ever to read thousands of publications on our website.

    Do you want to take a quick tour of the OpenBook's features?

    No Thanks Take a Tour »
  2. ×

    Show this book's table of contents, where you can jump to any chapter by name.

    « Back Next »
  3. ×

    ...or use these buttons to go back to the previous chapter or skip to the next one.

    « Back Next »
  4. ×

    Jump up to the previous page or down to the next one. Also, you can type in a page number and press Enter to go directly to that page in the book.

    « Back Next »
  5. ×

    To search the entire text of this book, type in your search term here and press Enter.

    « Back Next »
  6. ×

    Share a link to this book page on your preferred social network or via email.

    « Back Next »
  7. ×

    View our suggested citation for this chapter.

    « Back Next »
  8. ×

    Ready to take your reading offline? Click here to buy this book in print or download it as a free PDF, if available.

    « Back Next »
Stay Connected!