Plasma Physics 1

Module PH2035

This module handbook serves to describe contents, learning outcome, methods and examination type as well as linking to current dates for courses and module examination in the respective sections.

Module version of WS 2014/5 (current)

There are historic module descriptions of this module. A module description is valid until replaced by a newer one.

available module versions
WS 2014/5WS 2010/1

Basic Information

PH2035 is a semester module in German or English language at Master’s level which is offered in winter semester.

This Module is included in the following catalogues within the study programs in physics.

  • General catalogue of special courses
  • Specific catalogue of special courses for Applied and Engineering Physics
  • Specific catalogue of special courses for nuclear, particle, and astrophysics

If not stated otherwise for export to a non-physics program the student workload is given in the following table.

Total workloadContact hoursCredits (ECTS)
150 h 75 h 5 CP

Responsible coordinator of the module PH2035 is Ulrich Stroth.

Content, Learning Outcome and Preconditions


This module gives an introduction into plasma physics with numerous examples of natural phenomena and technical applications. In part 1 the fundamental properties of plasmas will be introduced together with a general characterization of different types of plasmas and current diagnostic techniques. Topics addressed are charged particles in magnetic fields, adiabatic invariants, the fluid description of plasmas, magneto-hydrodynamic models, the equilibrium condition, plasma stability, the dynamics of typical plasma instabilities and Alfvén waves. The models will be applied to examples from the sun, the ionosphere, technological applications and problems from fusion research.

Learning Outcome

After successful completion of this module the student is able to

  1. name the main properties of plasmas and the difference to neutral gases,
  2. describe the dynamics of charged particles in magnetic fields and explain fundamental concepts of magnetic confinement,
  3. investigate the stability properties of specific plasmas
  4. illustrate the dynamics of typical plasma instabilities and Alfvén waves
  5. to describe, on the basis of the learned fundamentals, plasma-diagnostical and technical applications


Lectures up to the Bachelor level

Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature

Courses and Schedule

VU 4 Plasmaphysik 1 Stroth, U.
Mitwirkende: Birkenmeier, G.
Donnerstag, 08:30–10:00
sowie Termine in Gruppen

Learning and Teaching Methods

Lecture, Beamer presentation, black board, exercises, discussion, films


Exercises, internet pages, additional literature


  • U. Stroth, Plasmaphysik, Phänomene, Grundlagen, Anwendungen, VIEWEG+TEUBNER Press, New York", Wiesbaden 2011
  • R.J. Goldston, P.H. Rutherford, "Plasmaphysik. Eine Einführung", Vieweg 1998, ISBN: 3-528-06884-1,
  • T.J.M. Boyd and J.J. Sanderson, "The Physics of Plasmas", Cambridge University Press 2003, ISBN: 0 521 459125,
  • F.F. Chen, "Plasma Physics and Controlled Fusion", Plenum Press, 1990, ISBN: 0-306-41332-9,

Module Exam

Description of exams and course work

In an oral exam the learning outcome is tested using comprehension questions and sample problems.

In accordance with §12 (8) APSO the exam can be done as a written test. In this case the time duration is 60 minutes.

Remarks on associated module exams

The exam for this module can be taken together with the exam to the associated follow-up module PH2036: Plasmaphysik 2 / Plasma Physics 2 after the follwoing semester. In this case you need to register for both exams in the following semester.

Exam Repetition

There is a possibility to take the exam at the end of the semester. There is a possibility to take the exam in the following semester.

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