In bridging the gap between standard textbook material and state-of-the-art research, this text offers a broad flavor to postgraduate and postdoctoral students just coming to the field. And because of its unique mix, it will also be useful to lecturers looking for advanced teaching material for their seminars and courses.
They deal with fundamental plasma phenomena, particle and radiation processes in astrophysics and space physics as the origin of magnetic activity, the basic mechanisms of particle acceleration and plasma heating common to plasma in galaxies and at the sun as well as in planetary magnetospheres. New observational results from YOHKOH, SOHO and other missions are presented. Using these, the basic physical processes leading to coronal heating and solar/stellar wind acceleration are discussed. Other topics are the microphysics of shock waves and transport phenomena in collisionless plasmas and the physics of thin plasma boundaries.
The volume also treats the ionic composition of plasma and dust in the Universe and their observability in the solar system. A CD-ROM is attached which adds a valuable multimedia component, illuminating results of observations, theory and simulations.
Everyone interested in astrophysical plasmas, its radiation and charged particle aspects, and advanced or even beginning students will find references to nearly all modern aspects of plasma astrophysics and space physics as well as an overview of current research results.