Kinetic Theory of Particles and Photons

Theoretical Foundations of Non-LTE Plasma Spectroscopy

  • Joachim Oxenius

Part of the Springer Series in Electrophysics book series (SSEP, volume 20)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-XII
  2. Joachim Oxenius
    Pages 1-34
  3. Joachim Oxenius
    Pages 35-65
  4. Joachim Oxenius
    Pages 66-86
  5. Joachim Oxenius
    Pages 87-126
  6. Joachim Oxenius
    Pages 127-148
  7. Joachim Oxenius
    Pages 149-239
  8. Joachim Oxenius
    Pages 240-273
  9. Joachim Oxenius
    Pages 274-343
  10. Back Matter
    Pages 345-356

About this book


Many laboratory and astrophysical plasmas show deviations from local ther­ modynamic equilibrium (LTE). This monograph develops non-LTE plasma spectroscopy as a kinetic theory of particles and photons, considering the radiation field as a photon gas whose distribution function (the radiation in­ tensity) obeys a kinetic equation (the radiative transfer equation), just as the distribution functions of particles obey kinetic equations. Such a unified ap­ proach provides clear insight into the physics of non-LTE plasmas. Chapter 1 treats the principle of detailed balance, of central importance for understanding the non-LTE effects in plasmas. Chapters 2, 3 deal with kinetic equations of particles and photons, respectively, followed by a chapter on the fluid description of gases with radiative interactions. Chapter 5 is devoted to the H theorem, and closes the more general first part of the book. The last two chapters deal with more specific topics. After briefly discuss­ ing optically thin plasmas, Chap. 6 treats non-LTE line transfer by two-level atoms, the line profile coefficients of three-level atoms, and non-Maxwellian electron distribution functions. Chapter 7 discusses topics where momentum exchange between matter and radiation is crucial: the approach to thermal equilibrium through interaction with blackbody radiation, radiative forces, and Compton scattering. A number of appendices have been added to make the book self-contained and to treat more special questions. In particular, Appendix B contains an in­ troductory discussion of atomic line profile coefficients.


Absorption Boltzmann equation Brownian motion Photons Plasma atoms distribution electron kinetic theory particles photon physics radiation scattering spectroscopy

Authors and affiliations

  • Joachim Oxenius
    • 1
  1. 1.Service de Chimie Physique IIUniversité Libre de BruxellesBruxellesBelgium

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1986
  • Publisher Name Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-3-642-70730-8
  • Online ISBN 978-3-642-70728-5
  • Series Print ISSN 0172-5734
  • Buy this book on publisher's site