This rigorous explanation of plasmas is relevant to diverse plasma applications such as controlled fusion, astrophysical plasmas, solar physics, magnetospheric plasmas, and plasma thrusters. More thorough than previous texts, it exploits new powerful mathematical techniques to develop deeper insights into plasma behavior. After developing the basic plasma equations from first principles, the book explores single particle motion with particular attention to adiabatic invariance. The author then examines types of plasma waves and the issue of Landau damping. Magnetohydrodynamic equilibrium and stability are tackled with emphasis on the topological concepts of magnetic helicity and self-organization. Advanced topics follow, including magnetic reconnection, nonlinear waves, and the Fokker-Planck treatment of collisions. The book concludes by discussing unconventional plasmas such as non-neutral and dusty plasmas. Written for beginning graduate students and advanced undergraduates, this text emphasizes the fundamental principles that apply across many different contexts.
Preface; 1. Basic concepts; 2. The Vlasov, two-fluid, and MHD models of plasma dynamics; 3. Motion of a single plasma particle; 4. Elementary plasma waves; 5. Streaming instabilities and the Landau problem; 6. Cold plasma waves in a magnetized plasma; 7. Waves in inhomogeneous plasmas and wave energy relations; 8. Vlasov theory of warm electrostatic waves in a magnetized plasma; 9. MHD equilibria; 10. Stability of static MHD equilibria; 11. Magnetic helicity interpreted and Woltjer–Taylor relaxation; 12. Magnetic reconnection; 13. Fokker–Planck theory of collisions; 14. Wave-particle nonlinearities; 15. Wave-wave nonlinearities; 16. Non-neutral plasmas; 17. Dusty plasmas; Appendix A. Intuitive method for vector calculus identities; Appendix B. Vector calculus in orthogonal curvilinear coordinates; Appendix C. Frequently used physical constants and formulae; Bibliography; References; Index.
Review of the hardback:
"A conscientious and elegantly produced textbook... single-particle orbit theory and linearized waves in unbounded plasma are particularly well done … A lot can be learned from it. Picking up the text and reading it at random is often rewarding."
D. C. Montgomery, Theoretical and Computational Fluid Dynamics
"Gives an exceptionally lucid and compelling overview of recent progress in this broad branch of physics. The unique organization of the book and straightforward writing style reflect the extensive teaching background of the author … A welcome addition to the library of both the expert and the newcomer to the field."
Geophysical and Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics
"The book will undoubtedly be valued by those doing postgraduate work in this field, for whom it provides a useful bridge to the scientific literature. It is also highly recommended to researchers looking to widen their horizons to other areas of plasma physics outside their area of expertise."
Zulfikar Najmudin, Times Higher Education Supplement