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Enhanced electron scattering due to the ion acoustic instability

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3 Author(s)
S. D. Baalrud ; Engineering Physics Department, University of Wisconsin, 1500 Engr. Dr., 53706 USA ; J. D. Callen ; C. C. Hegna

A Lenard-Balescu type collision operator is derived that accounts for the ion acoustic convective instabilities in plasmas whereby interactions between electrons and excited waves lead to enhanced thermal fluctuations and electron scattering relative to the conventional Coulomb level. The presheath region of an ion sheath, present near the boundary of nearly all plasmas, is considered as a particular example of the theory to demonstrate enhanced electron transport ubiquitous in low temperature plasmas. Enhanced scattering by the convective instabilities near plasma boundaries may lead to population of the otherwise truncated tail of the Maxwellian electron velocity distribution near an ion sheath.

Published in:

Plasma Science, 2008. ICOPS 2008. IEEE 35th International Conference on

Date of Conference:

15-19 June 2008