neoclassical diffusionmedical dictionary

<radiobiology> In a magnetised plasma, _classical_ diffusion refers to transport of particles due to Coulomb collisions, taking the spiral orbits in the magnetic field into account. In a toroidal magnetic field, the actual rate of diffusive transport is much higher due to slow changes in the positions of the centres of the spirals, known as banana orbits.

This faster transport is called _neo-classical_. With very few exceptions the transport in toroidal devices is observed to be 10-100 times larger still, presumably due to small-scale turbulence. The observed transport is called _anomalous_ (although it actually is the normal state).

(09 Oct 1997)

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