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Resonance Cones in the Field Pattern of a Short Radio Frequency Probe in a Warm Anisotropic Plasma


Fisher, Raymond Kurt (1970) Resonance Cones in the Field Pattern of a Short Radio Frequency Probe in a Warm Anisotropic Plasma. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/909M-7S46.


An experimental investigation of the angular field pattern of a small radio frequency probe in a plasma in a magnetic field is described. The field is observed to become very large along a resonance cone whose axis is parallel to the static magnetic field and whose opening angle is observed to vary with incident probe frequency, electron cyclotron frequency, and electron plasma frequency in agreement with simple cold plasma dielectric theory. The use of the resonance cone angle as a diagnostic tool to measure the plasma density in a plasma in a magnetic field is discussed. It is noted that similar cones might be expected near the ion cyclotron frequency.

The relationship of these cones to the limiting phase- and group-velocity cones which appear in the theory of plane wave propagation is discussed. The necessity for examining the allowed directions of the group velocity rather than the allowed directions of the phase velocity and customary phase velocity plots when determining whether propagation between two remote points in a plasma is possible, is emphasized.

The addition of electron thermal velocities to the theory is examined in the limit of a large static magnetic field. The resonance cone angle is shifted to a slightly smaller angle than that predicted by cold plasma theory, and a fine structure appears inside the cones and is shown to result from an interference between a fast electromagnetic wave and a slow plasma wave. The interference structure is observed experimentally, and measurements of the angular interference spacing are shown to agree with the warm plasma theory.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:(Physics and Aeronautics)
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Physics, Mathematics and Astronomy
Major Option:Physics
Minor Option:Aeronautics
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Gould, Roy Walter
Thesis Committee:
  • Unknown, Unknown
Defense Date:16 March 1970
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Office of Naval Research (ONR)220(50)
United States Atomic Energy CommissionUNSPECIFIED
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:06062012-143738636
Persistent URL:
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Item Electron Tube and Microwave Laboratory Technical Report
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:7139
Deposited On:06 Jun 2012 22:29
Last Modified:10 May 2024 21:46

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