We humans are not used to seeing plasma forms, until VERY recently in our development.
I think we will begin to see very strange stuff like this occur more and more, as our technologies improve on seeing things that previously, were ‘un-seeable’. I think things like this recent occurrence on the sun is a fine example.
Now, to my important point. Plasma behaves like a living thing. Is it a living thing? I guess it depends on what you view as living. Also, can ‘offworld sentient beings’ utilize plasma and magnetism, etc., as a means o transportation, or some type of ‘tool’? Just doing a little thinking outside the box.
Plasma is the fourth state of matter. It differs from solids, liquids and gases in so far as it’s atoms are divided into free-floating ‘negative’ electrons and ‘positive’ ions (an atom which has lost its electron/s). It is sometimes referred to as an ionized gas.
Students are generally taught about only three states of matter, and when Plasma does get a mention, little importance is assigned. Not only should plasma be added to the list, but the order should be reversed to put it in first place. The reasons for this will become clear.
The term Plasma was borrowed from blood plasma in order to describe its almost life-like and self-organising properties.
Plasma sometimes emits light when under the excitation of electrical and magnetic fields. Polar auroras bear witness to this fact.
[link to www.plasmacosmology.net
Plasma is an excellent conductor of electricity. Because of its free-flowing electrons its conductive properties far surpass those of copper and gold.
Due to its interaction with electromagnetism, plasmas display a complexity in structure far exceeding that of matter in gaseous, liquid, or solid states. It has a tendency to form into cellular and filamentary structures.
These structures derive from the fact that a charged particle flow (or current) produces a ring of magnetic fields around itself, ‘pinching’ plasma into multi-filamentary strands, as can be seen on both cosmic and more localised scales. Pictured right is a novelty plasma-lamp typical of those available on the high street.
[link to www.plasmacosmology.net]