From Lord Rayleigh to Professor A.A. Vlasov (from 1906 to 1945)
a Prokhorov General Physics Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, ul. Vavilova 38, Moscow, 119942, Russian Federation
b Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (State University), Institutskii per. 9, Dolgoprudnyi, Moscow Region, 141700, Russian Federation
c Lebedev Physical Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, Leninsky prosp. 53, Moscow, 119991, Russian Federation
d National Research Nuclear University ‘MEPhI’, Kashirskoe shosse 31, Moscow, 115409, Russian Federation
The authors' view on development of theoretical concepts of collisionless plasma is presented. The review begins with Lord Rayleigh's studies who established basics of multi-electron system theory in 1906 as a development of J.J. Thompson's atomic theory. The exploration was based on the concept that electrons move in a self-consistent electric field produced by the electrons themselves. Rayleigh used then this concept to predict oscillatory motion of electrons and obtained a formula for the frequency of the system's collective oscillations. Those studies established a foundation of Rayleigh's multi-electron system, and his formula for the frequency of collective oscillations may be considered the first accomplishment of the science pioneered by Lord Rayleigh.