Quasi-neutrality and Debye length

The distance over which quasi-neutrality becomes apparent depends on factors such as the density and temperature of a plasma. For example, the higher the density of a plasma, the smaller the region of quasi-neutrality because it will contain nearly equal numbers of negative and positively charged particle.
This distance over which quasi-neutrality may break down, is often described by the Debye length (or Debye sphere), and varies according to the physical characteristics of the plasma. The Debye length is typically less than a millimeter (i.e., charged regions will not exceed a millimeter), in plasmas found in fluorescent light tubes, tokamaks (used in fusion research), and the ionosphere?. However, the Debye length may reach about 10m in the interplanetary medium (solar wind) and interstellar medium (between the star), and up to 10,000m (10km) in intergalactic space. http://www.plasma-universe.com/index.php/Quasi-neutrality (external link)

Debye length, λD(m) (Min. neutrality distance) (Max charge separation)
Gas discharge tube 10−4m
Tokamak? 10−4m
Ionosphere? 10−3m
Magnetosphere? 102m
Solar core 10−11m
Solar wind 10m
Interstellar medium 10m
Intergalactic medium 105m (10km)

After Chapter 19: The Particle Kinetics of Plasma[4]

Lars Block? calculated that for an idealized space charge distribution model, if:

".. a double layer (DL) is made up of the rectangular charge distribution .. the thickness LD of a DL is at least of the order of 50 Debye lengths .. based on the assumption of a certain shape of the charge or potential distribution.

"It may be concluded that the thickness of a DL is generally large compared to the Debye length, but small compared to space plasmas and most laboratory plasmas.

"The satellite S3-3 (Mozer et al., 1977)[5] flew through, what appeared to be 'pairs' of double layers, with thickness d ~ 3-10 km"[6] http://www.plasma-universe.com/index.php/Quasi-neutrality (external link)

See Also

3.14 - Vortex Theory of Atomic Motions
13.04 - Atomic Subdivision
Atomic Cluster X-Ray Emission
Atomic Clusters
Atomic Force
atomic mass
atomic number
atomic theory
atomic triplet
atomic weight
Debye Continuum
Debye length
Debye length in a plasma
Debye length in an electrolyte
Etheric Orbital Rotations
Figure 13.06 - Atomic Subdivision
Formation of Atomic Clusters
Inert Gas
Interaction of Intense Laser Pulses with Atomic Clusters - Measurements of Ion Emission Simulations and Applications TD69.pdf
Laser Cluster Interactions
Law of Atomic Dissociation
Law of Atomic Pitch
Law of Oscillating Atomic Substances
Law of Pitch of Atomic Oscillation
Law of Variation of Atomic Oscillation by Electricity
Law of Variation of Atomic Oscillation by Sono-thermism
Law of Variation of Atomic Oscillation by Temperature
Law of Variation of Atomic Pitch by Electricity and Magnetism
Law of Variation of Atomic Pitch by Rad-energy
Law of Variation of Atomic Pitch by Temperature
Law of Variation of Pitch of Atomic Oscillation by Pressure
Models of Laser Cluster Interactions
Plasma holes
Quasi-neutrality and Debye length
Violation of quasi-neutrality

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