Theoretical Prerequisites

  • C. G. Campbell
Part of the Astrophysics and Space Science Library book series (ASSL, volume 456)


The essentials of plasma physics are outlined in relation to the derivation of the equations describing magnetohydrodynamics. The Maxwell equations are then combined with the equations of hydrodynamics to derive the equations of MHD, with viscosity and the associated energy transport equations included. The main types of magnetic wave solutions are derived, and their relevance to different types of flows is considered. Mathematical representations of the magnetic field are given, with application examples. Magnetic diffusion processes and their related transport coefficients are discussed, and then the basic theory of mean-field dynamos is presented, including a classification of the various types.

The theory of close binary stars is presented, including the Roche model and an outline of tidal theory. Mass transfer, due to Roche lobe overflow, is considered and the driving mechanisms of gravitational radiation and magnetic braking are described. The steady viscous accretion disc model is presented, and the fundamental time-scales in discs are derived. The essentials of spin dynamics are given, in relation to the response of compact stellar components to torques and in the analysis of stability.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. G. Campbell
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Mathematics, Statistics and PhysicsNewcastle UniversityNewcastle upon TyneUK

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