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The existence of orthogonal, field aligned coordinate systems, ie. coordinate systems with one coordinate direction always parallel to the local magnetic field is critically reviewed. Such coordinates are widely used eg. in wave propogation studies of magnetospheric plasmas and would as well be useful in theoretical studies of fusion plasma configurations, particularly of configurations without spatial symmetry. With the help of a simple model magnetic configurations it is demonstrated that the presence of local magnetic shear precludes in general the existence of such coordinates.

Additional information

Authors: SALAT A, Max-Planck-Institut fur Plasmaphysik, Garching (DE);TATRONIS J A, University of Wisconsin-Madison (US)
Bibliographic Reference: Article: IPP Report III/242, (1999)
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