I don’t know much about physics but an electrical enthusiast. In simple terms ignoring maths here what is plasma exactly? Is a corona a type of plasma involved with electromagnetic radiation? As you can probably see I’m clueless. Some simple explanation to understand the basics would be appreciated. Thanks.
Plasma has been called a fourth state of matter because it’s when a gas is heated enough that it ionizes–some electrons aren’t bound to a specific atom. Because of the free electrons, it’s highly conductive. This is used in fluorescent tubes, but the plasma is so conductive that a ballast coil is run in series to limit the current. You can also see plasma in a neon sign, a welding arc, and decorative plasma globes. Corona is a breakdown of air in an electric field and that’s also a plasma. But you’d only have electromagnetic radiation with alternating current and plasma can also be created with a direct current. If you see corona leakage in connection with a picture tube circuit, it’s DC. With a Tesla coil, it’s radio frequency AC. In a fluorescent tube or neon sign, it’s 60 cycle AC. If you look on Youtube, there are movies of the candle-in-the-microwave-oven experiment. Yes, a flame is also a plasma, and being conductive will absorb the radiation in a microwave oven. That’s how they get the blobs of plasma to float around. They’re being fed by the microwave energy.
on: 19th February 12