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Is plasma frequency a maximum?

  1. May 3, 2009 #1
    When i calculate a plasma frequency with the equation : ω=square root (4*pi*n*e^2/m)
    are the electrons always of that frequency or is it a maximum that an electron can oscillate?
  2. jcsd
  3. May 4, 2009 #2


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    The plasma frequency is the frequeny of oscillation of the electrons in a plasma when they are perturbed. They simply oscillate in space and only at the plasma frequency. This is a very simple motion and ignores a lot of things like ion movement, non-linear effects, and thermal movement. But under the basic assumptions and assuming a cold plasma then yes, the electrons only oscillate at this frequency but this does not preclude the electrons from oscillating due to sound waves, electromagnetic waves, etc. This is looking at a simple isolated phenomonon.
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