Title

Magnetic Helicity In Space And Laboratory Plasmas

Document Type

Book

Publication Date

1999

Published In

Magnetic Helicity In Space And Laboratory Plasmas

Abstract

Using the concept of magnetic helicity, physicists and mathematicians describe the topology of magnetic fields: twisting, writhing, and linkage. Mathematically, helicity is related to linking integrals, which Gauss introduced in the 19th century to describe the paths of asteroids in the sky. In the late 1970s the concept proved to be critical to understand laboratory plasma experiments on magnetic reconnection, dynamos, and magnetic field relaxation. In the late 1980s it proved equally important in understanding turbulence in the solar wind and the interplanetary magnetic field. During the last five years interest in magnetic helicity has grown dramatically in solar physics, and it will continue to grow as observations of vector magnetic fields become increasingly sophisticated.

Published By

American Geophysical Union

Editor(s)

Michael R. Brown, R. C. Canfield, and A. A. Pevtsov

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