In physics and chemistry, a plasma is typically an ionized gas, and is usually considered to be a distinct state of matter in contrast to gases because of its unique properties. "Ionized" means that at least one electron has been dissociated from, or added to, a proportion of the atoms or molecules. The free electric charges make the plasma electrically conductive so that it responds strongly to electromagnetic fields.
Plasma is typically formed by heating and ionizing a gas, stripping electrons away from atoms, thereby enabling the positive and negative charges to move freely.
Fields of active research
This is just a partial list of topics. A more complete and organized list can be found on the Web site for Plasma science and technology .
- Web site for Plasma science and technology