Observations Reshape Basic Plasma Wave Physics
New light has been shed on the invisible forces shaping our near-Earth environment, unveiling a fundamental physical phenomenon. Using a specialized suite of instruments aboard NASA’s Magnetospheric Multiscale – or MMS – spacecraft, scientists found the first observational proof of a fifty-year-old theory and uncovered new, unexpected complexities in the small-scale dynamics of a type of plasma wave, known as a kinetic Alfvén wave. The results may lead to improved nuclear fusion techniques for generating energy more efficiently.
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NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center