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Plasma physics 7.5 credits

Second cycle, F7010R
Course syllabus valid: Spring 2022 Sp 3 - Present
The version indicates the term and period for which this course syllabus is valid. The most recent version of the course syllabus is shown first.

Education level
Second cycle
Grade scale
G U 3 4 5
Space Engineering
Subject group (SCB)
Space Technology

Entry requirements

M0029M Calculus, M0030M Linear Algebra and Calculus, M0031M Linear Algebra and Differential Equations, M0032M Functions of Several Variables and Computer Tools, M0018M Linear analysis and F0007T Electromagnetic field theory or corresponding knowledges.

More information about English language requirements


The selection is based on 20-285 credits

Course Aim

After completing the course, you can:

Knowledge and understanding
  • Describe the basics of the plasma condition.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the mathematical methods that can be applied to solve problems in plasma physics.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of simplifications and approximations that are common in plasma physicss
Skill and ability

  • Describe and define a plasma
  • Analyze the motion of charged particles in homogeneous and inhomogeneous electric and magnetic fields.
  • Define the concept of adiabatic invariant and analyze waves in cold plasma.
  • Analyze and model plasma as a fluid (MHD).
  • Analyze and describe instabilities in plasma.

Judgment and attitude

  • Describe the role of plasma physics in space science and space technology.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of today's challenges in plasma physics.
  • Demonstrate increased experience in engineering assessments and analytical methods, as well as identification and formulation of problems. 

Definition of plasma. Occurence of plasmas. Charged particle motion. Wave propagation in plasma. Classification of plasma. Plasma theories. Plasma instabilities.

Each course occasion´s language and form is stated and appear on the course page on Luleå University of Technology's website.
The teaching consists of lectures, problem solving, and homework. The lectures provide theoretical background, motivations, explanations and examples of applications of the current course section. In problem solving, methodology and working methods for solving problems are demonstrated.

If there is a decision on special educational support, in accordance with the Guideline Student's rights and obligations at Luleå University of Technology, an adapted or alternative form of examination can be provided.
The course is examined with a written exam and laboratory work. All examination parts must be completed for the final grade on the course.


Advanced level. The course is a prerequisite for advanced study of plasma in space like in the course F7001R Space Plasma Physics.

Lars-Göran Westerberg

Literature. Valid from Spring 2012 Sp 4 (May change until 10 weeks before course start)
Francis F. Chen, Introduction to Plasma Physics and Controlled Fusion, 2nd edition, ISBN 1441932011

Course offered by
Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering

CodeDescriptionGrade scaleHPStatusFrom periodTitle
0003Laboratory workU G#1.50MandatoryS12
0004Written examG U 3 4 56.00MandatoryS22

Study guidance
Study guidance for the course is to be found in our learning platform Canvas before the course starts. Students applying for single subject courses get more information in the Welcome letter. You will find the learning platform via My LTU.

Syllabus established
by Huvudansvarig utbildningsledare SRT, Jonny Johansson 07 Feb 2011

Last revised
by Jonny Johansson, HUL SRT 16 Feb 2021