Scientific Visualization 3 Project


Dust Cluster Rotation : Phase Diagram


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A 2002 Visualization Project by Felix Cheung

Sydney Regional Scientific Visualization Laboratory, University of Sydney ( )

Complex Plasma Laboratory, University of Sydney ( )


Abstract: A dust cluster is consisted of several "dust" polymer spheres suspended in plasma. The dusts are confined by an electric potential well. It was observed in experiments that dust cluster exhibits "periodic pause" during rotation when a weak axial magnetic field is applied. This periodic pause is likely to be due to the asymmetry of the electric potential well. Using this periodic motion, a phase diagram (angular velocity versus angle plot) of the dust cluster can be obtained as a visualization aid to diagnose the shape of the potential well. In addition, the visualization can show us how the magnetic field modifies the electric field potential.