ON THE IMPLICATIONS OF ELECTRON DIFFUSION THROUGH A HYPERSONIC SHOCK FRONT
BROWN UNIV PROVIDENCE RI
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Recent experiments disclosed electrical effects well ahead of an advancing shock front. Certain of these effects were attributed to the diffusion of electrons through the shock front from the ionized region behind it. The diffusion hypothesis is examined in terms of a simple heuristic model, in which the diffusion is assumed to take place from a plane electron source moving with the shock velocity. The predictions of this model are generally consistent with the available experimental evidence. It is shown that the transient behavior of the precursor electron distribution is capable of increasing the Doppler shift of an electromagnetic wave reflected from the shock. Although the transient decays rapidly after the creation of the shock, there are conditions under which it should last long enough to allow an experimental check of this effect.
- Electricity and Magnetism
- Plasma Physics and Magnetohydrodynamics