Does it really matter what the fifth estate is? – Review the book
Plasma has been called magic, it’s been called the fourth state of matter, well come to think of it, it’s been called a lot of things, isn’t it. As our scientists advance and as humans travel to off-planet destinations, plasma research will continue to be an important part of the understanding we will need. Consider, will you, the significance of plasma physics and this fourth state of matter, and why our future scientist will need to be well versed in the subject.
WikiPedia explains plasma this way; “In physics and chemistry, a plasma is a gas-like state of matter in which a certain fraction of the particles are ionized. The basic premise is that heating a gas breaks its molecular bonds, breaking it down into its constituent atoms. Further heating leads to ionization (loss or gain of electrons), turning it into a plasma: containing charged particles, positive ions and negative electrons,” and I’d say that sums it up pretty well.
But that’s not the half of it, because consider all the potential applications and uses, not just for spaceflight, propulsion, power generation, etc., and so on, but for our understanding of matter as a whole, together with the universe in which we live. If this topic interests you as much as I do, I might like to recommend a very good book. One that I own and fully believe is the “best” book on the subject I’ve ever seen. The name of the book is:
“Principles of Plasma Physics for Engineers and Scientists” by Umran S. Inan (Stanford University) and Marek Golkowski (University of Colorado, Denver), Cambridge Press, (2011), 284 pages, ISBN: 978-0-521-19372-6
Yes, this book is quite expensive and probably not for the average Joe who is curious about such things, the book I have here is a hardcover and costs $100. It’s worth it though. The book covers motions of single particles, kinetic theory of plasma, multifluid theory, collisions and plasma conduction, introduction of waves in plasma and plasma diffusion among many other things, especially interesting to me was all the information behind the effects of ionization, waves, magnetization and plasma temperature.
The app is excellent and worth the price alone as a solid reference to have around. If one was teaching a plasma physics class, this might be the best textbook, not to mention a perfect reference to have on hand, which is what I use it for. Indeed, if you are an engineer, scientist, student, researcher or want to be, then you also need this book. Please consider all this and think about it.
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