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Plasma Physics Experimentation Platform

  1. Feb 12, 2010 #1
    Hello everyone,

    I have a degree in Computer Science/Engineering and have more recently been studying Physics. I've been really interested in the possibility of creating plasma in such an ordered state that virtual positrons begin to affect electrons non-chaotically and accelerate the electrons. I am currently trying to get a good starting point for moving into experimentation. I specifically want to work with high-frequency magnetized plasmas. What I would appreciate guidance on is what hardware would be well-suited for the task. Hardware that will allow me to precisely control and measure voltage, current, frequency, and EMF (and perhaps temperature and density) through a range that will allow me to do a great amount of experimentation with this type of plasma while having decent surge protection in the event of non-linear plasma effects.

    Last edited: Feb 12, 2010
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 17, 2015 #2
    Hey Forrest,

    Good evening (at least that is true here in Florida :) ). I too am looking at starting some basic research into plasma physics. Because of time constraints so far all I've done is research. There are a bunch of sites out there that can get you started. A LOT of it is just silly stuff, but there are really good sites also.

    I really depends on exactly what you want to do and what level of physics you are looking to achieve. You can look at what the hobby level folks are doing. Or you can start looking research level efforts.

    I started with Lyman Spitzer's book "Physics of Fully Ionized Gasses" (mostly be cause I already owned it), but there are sites like MIT's http://silas.psfc.mit.edu/introplasma/ Both are rather intense on the mathematics and theory.

    You can look up "fusor" (amateur plasma physics) to find really interesting how-tos and good information on vacuum techniques. For example: http://www.fusionenergyleague.org/i...erview_of_polywells_fusors_and_amateur_fusion

    So, it really depends on just what you are seeking to do, how much money you have available and the level of effort you are willing to put into your project. A simple gas discharge setup is probably good for checking things out (and is fairly cheap if you are self-funded). If you are good a building things you can easily get design a setup for a several thousand dollars in which you need to start considering radiation issues. Not the least of the expenses and difficulty, by the way, will be your vacuum system!

    Hope that helps,

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