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Introduction to Plasmas and Plasma Dynamics by Haibin Tang, Thomas M. York

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Chapter 3

Molecular Energy Distribution and Ionization in Gases

Abstract

This chapter describes the physical components and analysis of energy distribution in atoms and molecules. The energy distribution function and the partition function are derived and defined. The component molecular energies are specified as well as the effects of their activation. The law of mass action is shown to relate chemical reactions and energy transfer. Atomic structure is described as basic for definition of ionization processes. Equilibrium ionization reaction is applied to derive the Saha equation.

Keywords

Ionization processes; Law of mass action; Molecular energy components; Partition function; Saha equation

Introduction

The previous chapter developed the functional ...

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