Description of Individual Course Units
Course Unit CodeCourse Unit TitleType of Course UnitYear of StudySemesterNumber of ECTS Credits
9101015312016Plasma AstrophysicsElective118
Level of Course Unit
Second Cycle
Objectives of the Course
Objective of this course is to let the student understand the broad range of physical phenomena which determine the behaviour of astrophysical plasmas and the importance of collective effects; explain the movement of charged particles in fields; determine the effect of the medium on the propagation characteristics of electromagnetic waves; be able to grasp the MHD theory and MHD waves; develop a deep understanding concepts and analytical techniques of kinetic theory; understand the role of plasma instabilities in astrophysics.
Name of Lecturer(s)
Learning Outcomes
1To acquire knowledge that plasma behaves in a similar way from smaller to larger scales.
2To be able to appreciate one of the scientific principles, i.e., “from simple to complex”, when dealing with motion of charged particles in fields
3To develop an understanding of astrophysical plasmas both mathematically and physically
4To be able to derive the Dispersion Relation from linearization of PDEs
5To identify the wave modes from the Dispersion Relation
6To recognize the physical properties of MHD waves
7To be able to grasp the method used in finding conservation equations in kinetic theory
8To enhance your analytical abilities and physics problem-solving in general
Mode of Delivery
Face to Face
Prerequisites and co-requisities
None
Recommended Optional Programme Components
None
Course Contents
Vector Analysis; Dimensional Analysis; Motion of Charged Particles in Fields; Fluid Description of Plasma; Electromagnetic Waves in Plasmas; Magnetohydrodynamic Theory; Kinetic Theory; Instabilities in Astrophysics
Weekly Detailed Course Contents
WeekTheoreticalPracticeLaboratory
1VECTOR ANALYSIS Definition of a vector, scaler and vectorial products; vector operators: gradient, divergence, curl, Laplacian.
2DIMENSIONAL ANALYSIS WHAT IS A PLASMA? Plasma Parameters, Debye Shielding, Collisions in plasmas
3MOTION OF CHARGED PARTICLES IN FIELDS Constant and Uniform Electromagnetic Fields
4Drifts Due to an External Force
5Nonuniform Magnetostatics Fields
6Magnetic Mirror Effect, Time-Varying Electromagnetic Fields
7FLUID DESCRIPTION OF PLASMA Particle Conservation, Fluid Motion, Two Fluid and Single Fluid Equations
8MIDTERM EXAM
9MAGNETOHYDRODYNAMIC THEORY Ideal MHD equations, Conservation Laws, Dissipative MHD
10MHD Waves: Sound Waves, Alfven Waves, Magnetoacoustic Waves, Gravity Waves, Inertial Waves Damping of MHD Waves
11KINETIC THEORY Phase Space, Distribution Function, Boltzmann and Vlasov Equations
12Moments of the Boltzmann Equation Conservation of Mass, Conservation of Momentum, Conservation of Energy The Fokker-Planck Equation
13INSTABILITIES IN ASTROPHYSICS Hydrodynamic Instabilities: Gravitational (Jeans) Instability, Kelvin-Helmholtz Instability, Rayleigh- Taylor Instability, Convective Instability, Thermal Instability
14Kinetic Instabilities: Weibel Instability, Firehose Instability, Mirror Instability
15Magnetohydrodynamic Instabilities: Kink Instability, Parker Instability, Shear Instability, Magnetorotational Instability
16FINAL EXAM
Recommended or Required Reading
1) Plasma Astrophysics Part I, Boris V. Somov, Springer, 2006 2) Fundamentals of Plasma Physics, J. A. Bittencourt, Springer, 2004
Planned Learning Activities and Teaching Methods
Assessment Methods and Criteria
Term (or Year) Learning ActivitiesQuantityWeight
SUM0
End Of Term (or Year) Learning ActivitiesQuantityWeight
SUM0
SUM0
Language of Instruction
Turkish
Work Placement(s)
None
Workload Calculation
ActivitiesNumberTime (hours)Total Work Load (hours)
Midterm Examination133
Final Examination133
Attending Lectures14342
Individual Study for Homework Problems61696
Individual Study for Mid term Examination12424
Individual Study for Final Examination12424
Homework6848
TOTAL WORKLOAD (hours)240
Contribution of Learning Outcomes to Programme Outcomes
PO
1
PO
2
PO
3
PO
4
PO
5
PO
6
PO
7
PO
8
PO
9
PO
10
PO
11
LO1  5  4   55
LO245 3     4 
LO3  4 5435 54
LO45  34 5    
LO544 24 5    
LO6    4 3    
LO7 4  3      
LO8 55 5555545
* Contribution Level : 1 Very low 2 Low 3 Medium 4 High 5 Very High
 
Ege University, Bornova - İzmir / TURKEY • Phone: +90 232 311 10 10 • e-mail: intrec@mail.ege.edu.tr