Date: 07 Jun 2010

Structure and Dynamics of Finite Dust Clusters

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The structure of matter is widely determined by the action of electrostatic (Coulomb) forces. Systems with only a small number of trapped charge carriers, so-called Coulomb clusters, have a particular charm since their structural and dynamic properties strongly depend on the exact particle number. Dusty plasmas provide a unique possibility to trap, manipulate, and observe dust Coulomb clusters in different confinement geometries with high spatial and temporal resolution.