Birkeland pair twisted


Filamentation (or filamentary structure) is often seen in plasmas. It is created because plasma contains free electrons, making it highly electrically conductive — even more than metals, and even in tenuous cosmic plasmas. As charged particles readily move in a plasma, a ring of magnetic field forms around the current that can pinch it into … Read more

Heliospheric current sheet
The heliospheric current sheet results from the influence of the Sun's rotating magnetic field on the plasma in the interplanetary medium [1]. The wavy spiral shape has been likened to a ballerina's skirt, and carries a tiny 10-10 A/m2

Astrophysical plasma

An astrophysical plasma is a plasma (an ionised gas) found in astronomy whose physical properties are studied in the science of astrophysics. The vast majority of the volume of the universe is thought to consist of plasma, a state of matter in which atoms and molecules are so hot, that they have ionized by breaking … Read more

Jupiter aurora
The aurora on Jupiter,[1] powered by Jovian Birkeland currents.[2] Source/credit

Birkeland current

A Birkeland current usually refers to the electric currents in a planet’s ionosphere that follows magnetic field lines (ie field-aligned currents), and sometimes used to described any field-aligned electric current in a space plasma.[3] They are caused by the movement of a plasma perpendicular to a magnetic field. Birkeland currents often show filamentary, or twisted … Read more

Cosmic Plasma book
Cosmic Plasma by Hannes Alfvén

Cosmic Plasma (Book)

By Hannes Alfvén Publ. 1981. Astrophysics and Space Science Library, Vol. 82 (1981) Springer Verlag. ISBN 90-277-1151-8. Buy Extract: The aims of the present monograph may be summarized as follows: (1) Attention will be given to the question of how much knowledge can be gained by a systematic comparison of different regions of plasma. We … Read more

Hannes Alfvén portrait

Hannes Alfvén

Hannes Olof Gösta Alfvén (b. May 30, 1908; Norrköping, Sweden – d. April 2, 1995; Djursholm, Sweden) was a Swedish scientist who is considered one of the founding father of the field of space plasma physics.[2] He made many contributions and discoveries associated with both terrestrial and cosmic plasmas, (not always acknowledged by his peers), … Read more

Marklund Convection
Marklund convection a process in which plasma filaments separate elements.

Marklund convection

Marklund convection (after Göran Marklund) is a natural plasma convection process that takes place in filamentary currents, that may cause chemical separation. It may occur within a plasma with an associated electric field, that causes convection of ions and electrons inward towards a central twisting filamentary axis. A temperature gradient within the plasma will also … Read more

Physics of the Plasma Universe (Book)
Physics of the Plasma Universe
by Anthony L. Peratt, now in its second edition.

Physics of the Plasma Universe (Book)

By Anthony L. Peratt 1st Ed. publ. 1992 Springer-Verlag, ISBN 0-387-97575-6 and ISBN 3-540-97575-6 (Out of print. Second-hand copies @ 2nd Ed. publ. Sept. 2014. ISBN 978-1-4614-7818-8. Springer.[1] The content below refers to the first edition. Extract “The purpose of this book is to address the growing recognition of the need for plasma physics … Read more

Plasma Lamp


A plasma (often ionized gas, but see Pseudo-plasma), is a gaseous substance consisting of free charged particles, such as electrons, protons and other ions, that respond very strongly to electromagnetic fields. The free charges make the plasma highly electrically conductive, so that it may carry electric currents, and generate magnetic fields. This may cause the … Read more