Working with folk from my old stomping ground at the University of Liverpool, we discovered in the laboratory that a two-dimensional dusty plasma can be adequately described using the ideal gas law – even when shock waves are excited to melt the dust crystal.
Ideal Gas Behavior of a Strongly Coupled Complex (Dusty) Plasma
N.P. Oxtoby, E.J. Griffith, C. Durniak, J.F. Ralph, and D. Samsonov
In a laboratory, a two-dimensional complex (dusty) plasma consists of a low-density ionized gas containing a confined suspension of Yukawa-coupled plastic microspheres. For an initial crystal-like form, we report ideal gas behaviour in this strongly coupled system during shock-wave experiments. This evidence supports the use of the ideal gas law as the equation of state for soft crystals such as those formed by dusty plasmas.