I have been asked by Professor Kikuchi to write a foreword for this interesting book on Dusty Plasmas and other electrical phenomena. This was a somewhat daunting task due to the wide range of topics covered. In what follows I have attempted to summarize most of these topics; for this purpose I have divided them into four groups, namely (a) Dusty Plasmas, (b) The Electrical Environment, (c) Lightning and (d) The Noise Environment. I hope that I have succeeded. in indicating that each section contains much that is of great interest. It is perhaps unnecessary for me to point out that the book contains subjects which are at an exciting and important stage in their development. (a) Dusty Plasmas The subject of dusty plasmas is one of great interest. Dust particles in interplanetary space, within comets, in inter-stellar space and at ever greater distances will in general be charged. The plasma environment will ensure this, bombarding electrons will charge up the particle until it assumes a "floating potential," although time variation can occur. Ultra violet radiation can cause photoemission and in certain cases field emission is a possibility. The motion of the particles will be determined by electric and magnetic fields together with gravity. If the density of charged grains becomes sufficiently high the grains will interact with each other and collective behaviour will ensue. This newly evolving subject entails the study of all kinds of plasma waves.
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