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The interaction of an energetic He plasma beam with a quasi step-like transverse magnetic barrier is reported. When the rate of flow of momentum in the incident beam is less than the pressure of the magnetic field, a collisionless electrostatic shock is observed to form in front of the barrier as a result of the drastic compression of the plasma. The initially cold plasma is substantially thermalized by the shock and the electron density is increased by a factor of four. In the opposite limit the plasma penetrates the barrier in a flute-like manner.