pinch effect

pinch effect

noun Physics.
the tendency of an electric conductor or stream of charged particles to constrict, caused by the action of a magnetic field that is produced by a flow of electricity.

Origin:
1905–10

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World English Dictionary
pinch effect
 
n
the constriction of a beam of charged particles, caused by a force on each particle due to its motion in the magnetic field generated by the movement of the other particles

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Encyclopedia Britannica
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pinch effect

self-constriction of a cylinder of an electrically conducting plasma. When an electric current is passed through a gaseous plasma, a magnetic field is set up that tends to force the current-carrying particles together. This force can compress the plasma so that it is heated as well as confined, but such a self-pinched plasma cylinder is unstable and will quickly develop kinks or break up into a series of lumps resembling a string of sausages. The pinch effect, therefore, must be augmented with other magnetic-field configurations to produce a stable magnetic bottle.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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