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Macroscopic electromagnetic stress tensor for ionized media



Following the arguments presented by Mansuripur [Opt. Express, vol. 16, 2008, pp. 14821–14835], we suggest a form for the macroscopic electromagnetic stress tensor appropriate for ionized media. The generalized Lorentz force includes the effects of polarization forces as well as those on the free charge and current densities. The resulting tensor is written in terms of the fields D, B, E, and H. Its expression for a fully ionized medium subject to an external electromagnetic field is discussed, as are the plasma conservation equations. An apparatus is suggested for its experimental discrimination.



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