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Sample records for acceleration reconnection turbulence

  1. Particle-acceleration by turbulent magnetohydrodynamic reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Matthaeus, W. H.; Ambrosiano, J. J.; Goldstein, M. L.

    1984-01-01

    Test particles in a two dimensional, turbulent MHD simulation are found to undergo significant acceleration. The magnetic field configuration is a periodic sheet pinch which undergoes reconnection. The test particles are trapped in the reconnection region for times of order an Alfven transit time in the large electric fields that characterize the turbulent reconnection process at the relatively large magnetic Reynolds number used in the simulation. The maximum speed attained by these particles is consistent with an analytic estimate which depends on the reconnection electric field, the Alfven speed, and the ratio of Larmor period to the Alfven transit time.

  2. Test particle acceleration in turbulent reconnecting magnetic fields

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ambrosiano, John; Matthaeus, William H.; Goldstein, Melvyn L.; Plante, Daniel

    1988-01-01

    The effect of turbulence on particle acceleration in a MHD field was investigated by computing test particle trajectories in turbulent MHD reconnecting fields, including reconnection simulations at different magnetic Reynolds numbers. The dynamics of individual particles were investigated making it possible to examine the acceleration mechanism in great detail. It was found that turbulence influences the acceleration in two ways. It enhances the reconnection electric field while producing a stochastic electric field that gives rise to momentum diffusion; and it produces magnetic 'bubbles' and other irregularities that can temporarily trap test particles in the strong reconnection electric field for times comparable to the magnetofluid characteristic time.

  3. Test particle acceleration in turbulent reconnecting magnetic fields

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ambrosiano, John; Matthaeus, William H.; Goldstein, Melvyn L.; Plante, Daniel

    1988-01-01

    The effect of turbulence on particle acceleration in a MHD field was investigated by computing test particle trajectories in turbulent MHD reconnecting fields, including reconnection simulations at different magnetic Reynolds numbers. The dynamics of individual particles were investigated making it possible to examine the acceleration mechanism in great detail. It was found that turbulence influences the acceleration in two ways. It enhances the reconnection electric field while producing a stochastic electric field that gives rise to momentum diffusion; and it produces magnetic 'bubbles' and other irregularities that can temporarily trap test particles in the strong reconnection electric field for times comparable to the magnetofluid characteristic time.

  4. Particle Acceleration and Heating by Turbulent Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vlahos, Loukas; Pisokas, Theophilos; Isliker, Heinz; Tsiolis, Vassilis; Anastasiadis, Anastasios

    2016-08-01

    Turbulent flows in the solar wind, large-scale current sheets, multiple current sheets, and shock waves lead to the formation of environments in which a dense network of current sheets is established and sustains “turbulent reconnection.” We constructed a 2D grid on which a number of randomly chosen grid points are acting as scatterers (i.e., magnetic clouds or current sheets). Our goal is to examine how test particles respond inside this large-scale collection of scatterers. We study the energy gain of individual particles, the evolution of their energy distribution, and their escape time distribution. We have developed a new method to estimate the transport coefficients from the dynamics of the interaction of the particles with the scatterers. Replacing the “magnetic clouds” with current sheets, we have proven that the energization processes can be more efficient depending on the strength of the effective electric fields inside the current sheets and their statistical properties. Using the estimated transport coefficients and solving the Fokker-Planck (FP) equation, we can recover the energy distribution of the particles only for the stochastic Fermi process. We have shown that the evolution of the particles inside a turbulent reconnecting volume is not a solution of the FP equation, since the interaction of the particles with the current sheets is “anomalous,” in contrast to the case of the second-order Fermi process.

  5. MHD turbulence, reconnection, and test-particle acceleration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gray, Perry C.; Matthaeus, William H.

    1992-01-01

    We examine homogeneous MHD turbulence and turbulent magnetic reconnection as possible mechanisms for accelerating cosmic ray particles. Test particle calculations are performed using fields from MHD simulations, and initially Maxwellian particle distributions are shown to evolve into power-law distributions. Simple estimates for both the maximum energy attainable and the mean energies of the accelerated particles are fairly successful and are consistent with timescales for flares and cosmic rays.

  6. Stochastic electron acceleration during turbulent reconnection in strong shock waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsumoto, Yosuke

    2016-04-01

    Acceleration of charged particles is a fundamental topic in astrophysical, space and laboratory plasmas. Very high energy particles are commonly found in the astrophysical and planetary shocks, and in the energy releases of solar flares and terrestrial substorms. Evidence for relativistic particle production during such phenomena has attracted much attention concerning collisionless shock waves and magnetic reconnection, respectively, as ultimate plasma energization mechanisms. While the energy conversion proceeds macroscopically, and therefore the energy mostly flows to ions, plasma kinetic instabilities excited in a localized region have been considered to be the main electron heating and acceleration mechanisms. We present that efficient electron energization can occur in a much larger area during turbulent magnetic reconnection from the intrinsic nature of a strong collisionless shock wave. Supercomputer simulations have revealed a multiscale shock structure comprising current sheets created via an ion-scale Weibel instability and resulting energy dissipation through magnetic reconnection. A part of the upstream electrons undergoes first-order Fermi acceleration by colliding with reconnection jets and magnetic islands, giving rise to a nonthermal relativistic population downstream. The dynamics has shed new light on magnetic reconnection as an agent of energy dissipation and particle acceleration in strong shock waves.

  7. Explosive turbulent magnetic reconnection.

    PubMed

    Higashimori, K; Yokoi, N; Hoshino, M

    2013-06-21

    We report simulation results for turbulent magnetic reconnection obtained using a newly developed Reynolds-averaged magnetohydrodynamics model. We find that the initial Harris current sheet develops in three ways, depending on the strength of turbulence: laminar reconnection, turbulent reconnection, and turbulent diffusion. The turbulent reconnection explosively converts the magnetic field energy into both kinetic and thermal energy of plasmas, and generates open fast reconnection jets. This fast turbulent reconnection is achieved by the localization of turbulent diffusion. Additionally, localized structure forms through the interaction of the mean field and turbulence.

  8. Plasma physics. Stochastic electron acceleration during spontaneous turbulent reconnection in a strong shock wave.

    PubMed

    Matsumoto, Y; Amano, T; Kato, T N; Hoshino, M

    2015-02-27

    Explosive phenomena such as supernova remnant shocks and solar flares have demonstrated evidence for the production of relativistic particles. Interest has therefore been renewed in collisionless shock waves and magnetic reconnection as a means to achieve such energies. Although ions can be energized during such phenomena, the relativistic energy of the electrons remains a puzzle for theory. We present supercomputer simulations showing that efficient electron energization can occur during turbulent magnetic reconnection arising from a strong collisionless shock. Upstream electrons undergo first-order Fermi acceleration by colliding with reconnection jets and magnetic islands, giving rise to a nonthermal relativistic population downstream. These results shed new light on magnetic reconnection as an agent of energy dissipation and particle acceleration in strong shock waves.

  9. Stochastic acceleration by multi-island contraction during turbulent magnetic reconnection.

    PubMed

    Bian, Nicolas H; Kontar, Eduard P

    2013-04-12

    The acceleration of charged particles in magnetized plasmas is considered during turbulent multi-island magnetic reconnection. The particle acceleration model is constructed for an ensemble of islands which produce adiabatic compression of the particles. The model takes into account the statistical fluctuations in the compression rate experienced by the particles during their transport in the acceleration region. The evolution of the particle distribution function is described as a simultaneous first- and second-order Fermi acceleration process. While the efficiency of the first-order process is controlled by the average rate of compression, the second-order process involves the variance in the compression rate. Moreover, the acceleration efficiency associated with the second-order process involves both the Eulerian properties of the compression field and the Lagrangian properties of the particles. The stochastic contribution to the acceleration is nonresonant and can dominate the systematic part in the case of a large variance in the compression rate. The model addresses the role of the second-order process, how the latter can be related to the large-scale turbulent transport of particles, and explains some features of the numerical simulations of particle acceleration by multi-island contraction during magnetic reconnection.

  10. Turbulent reconnection and its implications.

    PubMed

    Lazarian, A; Eyink, G; Vishniac, E; Kowal, G

    2015-05-13

    this process to solar flares and γ-ray bursts. With reference to experiments, we analyse solar observations in situ as measurements in the solar wind or heliospheric current sheet and show the correspondence of data with turbulent reconnection predictions. Finally, we discuss first-order Fermi acceleration of particles that is a natural consequence of the turbulent reconnection.

  11. Turbulent reconnection and its implications

    PubMed Central

    Lazarian, A.; Eyink, G.; Vishniac, E.; Kowal, G.

    2015-01-01

    solar flares and γ-ray bursts. With reference to experiments, we analyse solar observations in situ as measurements in the solar wind or heliospheric current sheet and show the correspondence of data with turbulent reconnection predictions. Finally, we discuss first-order Fermi acceleration of particles that is a natural consequence of the turbulent reconnection. PMID:25848076

  12. Fundamental physical processes in coronae: Waves, turbulence, reconnection, and particle acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aschwanden, Markus J.

    2008-05-01

    Our understanding of fundamental processes in the solar corona has been greatly progressed based on the space observations of SMM, Yohkoh, Compton GRO, SOHO, TRACE, RHESSI, and STEREO. We observe now acoustic waves, MHD oscillations, turbulence-related line broadening, magnetic configurations related to reconnection processes, and radiation from high-energy particles on a routine basis. We review a number of key observations in EUV, soft X-rays, and hard X-rays that innovated our physical understanding of the solar corona, in terms of hydrodynamics, MHD, plasma heating, and particle acceleration processes.

  13. Acceleration during magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Beresnyak, Andrey; Li, Hui

    2015-07-16

    The presentation begins with colorful depictions of solar x-ray flares and references to pulsar phenomena. Plasma reconnection is complex, could be x-point dominated or turbulent, field lines could break due to either resistivity or non-ideal effects, such as electron pressure anisotropy. Electron acceleration is sometimes observed, and sometimes not. One way to study this complex problem is to have many examples of the process (reconnection) and compare them; the other way is to simplify and come to something robust. Ideal MHD (E=0) turbulence driven by magnetic energy is assumed, and the first-order acceleration is sought. It is found that dissipation in big (length >100 ion skin depths) current sheets is universal and independent on microscopic resistivity and the mean imposed field; particles are regularly accelerated while experiencing curvature drift in flows driven by magnetic tension. One example of such flow is spontaneous reconnection. This explains hot electrons with a power-law tail in solar flares, as well as ultrashort time variability in some astrophysical sources.

  14. Properties of the first-order Fermi acceleration in fast magnetic reconnection driven by turbulence in collisional magnetohydrodynamical flows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    del Valle, Maria V.; de Gouveia Dal Pino, E. M.; Kowal, G.

    2016-12-01

    Fast magnetic reconnection can occur in different astrophysical sources, producing flare-like emission and particle acceleration. Currently, this process is being studied as an efficient mechanism to accelerate particles via a first-order Fermi process. In this paper, we analyse the acceleration rate and the energy distribution of test particles injected into three-dimensional magnetohydrodynamical (MHD) domains with large-scale current sheets where reconnection is made fast by the presence of turbulence. We study the dependence of the particle acceleration time with the relevant parameters of the embedded turbulence: the Alfvén speed VA, the injection power Pinj and scale kinj (kinj = 1/linj). We find that the acceleration time follows a power-law dependence with the particle kinetic energy: tacc ∝ Eα, with 0.2 < α < 0.6 for a vast range of values of c/VA ˜ 20-1000. The acceleration time decreases with the Alfvén speed (and therefore with the reconnection velocity) as expected, having an approximate dependence tacc ∝ (VA/c)-κ, with κ ˜ 2.1-2.4 for particles reaching kinetic energies between 1 and 100 mpc2, respectively. Furthermore, we find that the acceleration time is only weakly dependent on the Pinj and linj parameters of the turbulence. The particle spectrum develops a high-energy tail, which can be fitted by a hard power law already in the early times of the acceleration, consistent with the results of kinetic studies of particle acceleration by magnetic reconnection in collisionless plasmas.

  15. Relation of astrophysical turbulence and magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Lazarian, A.; Eyink, Gregory L.; Vishniac, E. T.

    2012-01-15

    Astrophysical fluids are generically turbulent and this must be taken into account for most transport processes. We discuss how the preexisting turbulence modifies magnetic reconnection and how magnetic reconnection affects the MHD turbulent cascade. We show the intrinsic interdependence and interrelation of magnetic turbulence and magnetic reconnection, in particular, that strong magnetic turbulence in 3D requires reconnection and 3D magnetic turbulence entails fast reconnection. We follow the approach in Eyink et al.[Astrophys. J. 743, 51 (2011)] to show that the expressions of fast magnetic reconnection in A. Lazarian and E. T. Vishniac [Astrophys. J. 517, 700 (1999)] can be recovered if Richardson diffusion of turbulent flows is used instead of ordinary Ohmic diffusion. This does not revive, however, the concept of magnetic turbulent diffusion which assumes that magnetic fields can be mixed up in a passive way down to a very small dissipation scales. On the contrary, we are dealing the reconnection of dynamically important magnetic field bundles which strongly resist bending and have well defined mean direction weakly perturbed by turbulence. We argue that in the presence of turbulence the very concept of flux-freezing requires modification. The diffusion that arises from magnetic turbulence can be called reconnection diffusion as it based on reconnection of magnetic field lines. The reconnection diffusion has important implications for the continuous transport processes in magnetized plasmas and for star formation. In addition, fast magnetic reconnection in turbulent media induces the First order Fermi acceleration of energetic particles, can explain solar flares and gamma ray bursts. However, the most dramatic consequence of these developments is the fact that the standard flux freezing concept must be radically modified in the presence of turbulence.

  16. Turbulent General Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eyink, G. L.

    2015-07-01

    Plasma flows with a magnetohydrodynamic (MHD)-like turbulent inertial range, such as the solar wind, require a generalization of general magnetic reconnection (GMR) theory. We introduce the slip velocity source vector per unit arclength of field line, the ratio of the curl of the non-ideal electric field in the generalized Ohm’s Law and magnetic field strength. It diverges at magnetic nulls, unifying GMR with null-point reconnection. Only under restrictive assumptions is the slip velocity related to the gradient of quasi-potential (which is the integral of parallel electric field along magnetic field lines). In a turbulent inertial range, the non-ideal field becomes tiny while its curl is large, so that line slippage occurs even while ideal MHD becomes accurate. The resolution is that ideal MHD is valid for a turbulent inertial range only in a weak sense that does not imply magnetic line freezing. The notion of weak solution is explained in terms of renormalization group (RG) type theory. The weak validity of the ideal Ohm’s law in the inertial range is shown via rigorous estimates of the terms in the generalized Ohm’s Law. All non-ideal terms are irrelevant in the RG sense and large-scale reconnection is thus governed solely by ideal dynamics. We discuss the implications for heliospheric reconnection, in particular for deviations from the Parker spiral model. Solar wind observations show that reconnection in a turbulence-broadened heliospheric current sheet, which is consistent with Lazarian-Vishniac theory, leads to slip velocities that cause field lines to lag relative to the spiral model.

  17. TURBULENT GENERAL MAGNETIC RECONNECTION

    SciTech Connect

    Eyink, G. L.

    2015-07-10

    Plasma flows with a magnetohydrodynamic (MHD)-like turbulent inertial range, such as the solar wind, require a generalization of general magnetic reconnection (GMR) theory. We introduce the slip velocity source vector per unit arclength of field line, the ratio of the curl of the non-ideal electric field in the generalized Ohm’s Law and magnetic field strength. It diverges at magnetic nulls, unifying GMR with null-point reconnection. Only under restrictive assumptions is the slip velocity related to the gradient of quasi-potential (which is the integral of parallel electric field along magnetic field lines). In a turbulent inertial range, the non-ideal field becomes tiny while its curl is large, so that line slippage occurs even while ideal MHD becomes accurate. The resolution is that ideal MHD is valid for a turbulent inertial range only in a weak sense that does not imply magnetic line freezing. The notion of weak solution is explained in terms of renormalization group (RG) type theory. The weak validity of the ideal Ohm’s law in the inertial range is shown via rigorous estimates of the terms in the generalized Ohm’s Law. All non-ideal terms are irrelevant in the RG sense and large-scale reconnection is thus governed solely by ideal dynamics. We discuss the implications for heliospheric reconnection, in particular for deviations from the Parker spiral model. Solar wind observations show that reconnection in a turbulence-broadened heliospheric current sheet, which is consistent with Lazarian–Vishniac theory, leads to slip velocities that cause field lines to lag relative to the spiral model.

  18. A one-dimensional loop model invoking reconnection-driven turbulence for electron acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Longcope, Dana

    2017-08-01

    We have recently developed a one-dimensional flare loop model in which magnetic energy release occurs via loop retraction following reconnection. The plasma in our retracting flux tube evolves several propagating shock including a kind of slow magnetosonic shock at which the plasma is heated to flare temperatures. The model has proven able to reproduce several features observed in flares. Our model, like that original proposed by Petschek, is framed in terms of fluid equations (MHD), and therefore lacks the population of non-thermal electrons. While missing from fluid models, non-thermal electrons are one of the most important characteristics observed in flares. A separate line of flare modeling has focused on the generation of non-thermal electrons by, for example, MHD turbulence. These model have not generally included the reconnection process believed to drive that turbulence. Here we describe a model in which flux retracting from reconnection generates turbulence, which then generates a non-thermal electron population. While not entirely self-consistent, this model combines into a single chain those elements by which magnetic energy is converted into different forms observed in flares.

  19. Dynamic balance in turbulent reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yokoi, N.; Higashimori, K.; Hoshino, M.

    2012-12-01

    Dynamic balance between the enhancement and suppression of transports due to turbulence in magnetic reconnection is discussed analytically and numerically by considering the interaction of the large-scale field structures with the small-scale turbulence in a consistent manner. Turbulence is expected to play an important role in bridging small and large scales related to magnetic reconnection. The configurations of the mean-field structure are determined by turbulence through the effective transport. At the same time, statistical properties of turbulence are determined by the mean-field structure through the production mechanisms of turbulence. This suggests that turbulence and mean fields should be considered simultaneously in a self-consistent manner. Following the theoretical prediction on the interaction between the mean-fields and turbulence in magnetic reconnection presented by Yokoi and Hoshino (2011), a self-consistent model for the turbulent reconnection is constructed. In the model, the mean-field equations for compressible magnetohydrodynamics are treated with the turbulence effects incorporated through the turbulence correlation such as the Reynolds stress and turbulent electromotive force. Transport coefficients appearing in the expression for these correlations are not adjustable parameters but are determined through the transport equations of the turbulent statistical quantities such as the turbulent MHD energy, the turbulent cross helicity. One of the prominent features of this reconnection model lies in the point that turbulence is not implemented as a prescribed one, but the generation and sustainment of turbulence through the mean-field inhomogeneities are treated. The theoretical predictions are confirmed by the numerical simulation of the model equations. These predictions include the quadrupole cross helicity distribution around the reconnection region, enhancement of reconnection rate due to turbulence, localization of the reconnection region

  20. Diffusive Shock Acceleration and Reconnection Acceleration Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zank, G. P.; Hunana, P.; Mostafavi, P.; Le Roux, J. A.; Li, Gang; Webb, G. M.; Khabarova, O.; Cummings, A.; Stone, E.; Decker, R.

    2015-12-01

    Shock waves, as shown by simulations and observations, can generate high levels of downstream vortical turbulence, including magnetic islands. We consider a combination of diffusive shock acceleration (DSA) and downstream magnetic-island-reconnection-related processes as an energization mechanism for charged particles. Observations of electron and ion distributions downstream of interplanetary shocks and the heliospheric termination shock (HTS) are frequently inconsistent with the predictions of classical DSA. We utilize a recently developed transport theory for charged particles propagating diffusively in a turbulent region filled with contracting and reconnecting plasmoids and small-scale current sheets. Particle energization associated with the anti-reconnection electric field, a consequence of magnetic island merging, and magnetic island contraction, are considered. For the former only, we find that (i) the spectrum is a hard power law in particle speed, and (ii) the downstream solution is constant. For downstream plasmoid contraction only, (i) the accelerated spectrum is a hard power law in particle speed; (ii) the particle intensity for a given energy peaks downstream of the shock, and the distance to the peak location increases with increasing particle energy, and (iii) the particle intensity amplification for a particular particle energy, f(x,c/{c}0)/f(0,c/{c}0), is not 1, as predicted by DSA, but increases with increasing particle energy. The general solution combines both the reconnection-induced electric field and plasmoid contraction. The observed energetic particle intensity profile observed by Voyager 2 downstream of the HTS appears to support a particle acceleration mechanism that combines both DSA and magnetic-island-reconnection-related processes.

  1. Electron acceleration in the turbulent reconnecting current sheets in solar flares

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, G. P.; Huang, G. L.

    2009-07-01

    Context: We investigate the nonlinear evolution of the electron distribution in the presence of the strong inductive electric field in the reconnecting current sheets (RCS) of solar flares. Aims: We aim to study the characteristics of nonthermal electron-beam plasma instability and its influence on electron acceleration in RCS. Methods: Including the external inductive field, the one-dimensional Vlasov simulation is performed with a realistic mass ratio for the first time. Results: Our principal findings are as follows: 1) the Buneman instability can be quickly excited on the timescale of 10-7 s for the typical parameters of solar flares. After saturation, the beam-plasma instabilities are excited due to the non-Maxwellian electron distribution; 2) the final velocity of the electrons trapped by these waves is of the same order as the phase speed of the waves, while the untrapped electrons continue to be accelerated; 3) the inferred anomalous resistance of the current sheet and the energy conversion rate are basically of the same order as those previously estimated, e.g., “the analysis of Martens”. Conclusions: The Buneman instability is excited on the timescale of 10-7 s and the wave-particle resonant interaction limits the low-energy electrons to be further accelerated in RCS.

  2. How anomalous resistivity accelerates magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Che, H.

    2017-08-01

    Whether turbulence induced anomalous resistivity (AR) can facilitate a fast magnetic reconnection in collisionless plasma is a subject of active debate for decades. Recent space observations suggest that the reconnection rate can be higher than the Hall-reconnection rate and turbulent dissipation is required. In this paper, using particle-in-cell simulations, we present a case study of how AR produced by Buneman instability accelerates magnetic reconnection. We first show that the AR/drag produced by Buneman instability in a thin electron current layer (1) can dissipate magnetic energy stored in the current layer through dissipation of the kinetic energy of electron beams; (2) the inhomogeneous drag caused by wave couplings spontaneously breaks the magnetic field lines and causes impulsive fast non-Hall magnetic reconnection on electron-scales with a mean rate reaching of 0.6 VA. We then show that a Buneman instability driven by intense electron beams around the x-point in a 3D magnetic reconnection significantly enhances the dissipation of the magnetic energy. Electron-scale magnetic reconnections driven by the inhomogeneous drag around the x-line enhance the reconnection electric field and the in-plane perpendicular magnetic field. About 40% of the released magnetic energy is converted into electron thermal energy by AR while 50% is converted into kinetic energy of the electron beams through the acceleration by the reconnection electric field. The enhanced magnetic energy dissipation is balanced by a net Poynting flux in-flow. About 10% of the released magnetic energy is brought out by an enhanced Poynting flux out-flow. These results suggest that AR with sufficient intensity and electron-scale inhomogeneity can significantly accelerate magnetic reconnection.

  3. Magnetic reconnection in turbulence: from Cluster to MMS and beyond

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Retino, Alessandro; Sundkvist, David; Matthaeus, William; Vaivads, Andris; Califano, Francesco; Khotyaintsev, Yuri; LeContel, Olivier; Sorriso-valvo, Luca; Chasapis, Alexandros; Lavraud, Benoit; Valentini, Francesco; Servidio, Sergio; Rossi, Claudia; Camporeale, Enrico

    2016-07-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a universal energy dissipation mechanism occurring in space and astrophysical magnetized plasmas. Such plasmas are frequently in a turbulent state, raising the fundamental question of the role reconnection for energy dissipation in turbulence. Understanding reconnection in turbulence is of pivotal importance to explain phenomena such as particle acceleration in stellar atmospheres, the heating of interplanetary and interstellar media as well as particle energization in accretion disks and cosmic rays acceleration. Many numerical simulations support the role of reconnection for efficiently dissipate turbulent energy and heat and accelerated particles. Such simulations indicate that reconnection occurs in small-scale current sheets spontaneously forming within the turbulence. Yet experimental evidence of reconnection in turbulence has been provided only recently thanks to high resolution in situ measurements by modern spacecraft. Here we present ESA/Cluster and more recent NASA/MMS observations in near-Earth space showing evidence of reconnection in turbulence and its importance for energy dissipation and particle energization. We also discuss implications for upcoming spacecraft missions such as Solar Orbiter and Solar Probe Plus, as well as for missions currently under study pahse such as ESA/THOR.

  4. Nonthermal Particle Acceleration in Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Fan; Li, Hui; Zhang, Haocheng; Daughton, William; Liu, Yi-Hsin; Lloyd-Ronning, Nicole

    2017-08-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a leading mechanism for dissipating magnetic energy and accelerating nonthermal particles in Poynting-flux-dominated flows. In this study, we investigate nonthermal particle acceleration during magnetic reconnection in a magnetically dominated plasma using fully kinetic simulations. We have studied the magnetically dominated regime by varying σe = 103-105 and mass ratios. The results demonstrate that reconnection quickly establishes power-law energy distributions for both electrons and ions within several (2-3) light-crossing times. For the cases with periodic boundary conditions, the power-law index is 1 < p < 2 for both electrons and ions. We study particle acceleration in magnetic reconnection via large-scale 3D kinetic simulations to examine several effects that may be important, including pre-existing fluctuations, kink and secondary tearing instabilities, and open boundary conditions. The results show that particle acceleration in reconnection layers is surprisingly robust despite the development of 3D turbulence and instabilities. The main acceleration mechanism is a Fermi-like acceleration through the drift motions of charged particles. We discuss the implication of this study in the context of Poynting-flux dominated jets and pulsar winds, especially the applications for explaining nonthermal high-energy emissions.

  5. Fermi Acceleration in Magnetic Reconnection Sites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Gouveia Dal Pino, E. M.; Kowal, G.; Lazarian, A.

    2014-09-01

    The mechanisms that accelerate cosmic relativistic particles are not fully understood yet. A variety of processes has been investigated and the acceleration in magnetic reconnection sites has lately gained increasing attention from researchers not only for its potential importance in the solar system, but also beyond it, in astrophysical environments like compact stellar sources, AGNs and GRBs, and even in diffusive magnetized media as the interstellar medium (ISM) and the intergalactic medium (IGM). In this talk we review this process and, supported by three-dimensional MHD simulations with the injection of thousands of test particles, we show that they can be efficiently accelerated by magnetic reconnection through a first-order Fermi process within large scale magnetic current sheets, even in a collisional fluid (contrary to what was previously believed), especially when local turbulence is present which makes reconnection fast, the acceleration layer thicker and the overall process naturally three-dimensional. Tests of particle acceleration in pure MHD turbulent environments (i.e., without the presence of large scale current sheets), on the other hand, indicate that the dominant acceleration process is a second-order Fermi.

  6. Theory and Applications of Non-relativistic and Relativistic Turbulent Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lazarian, A.; Kowal, G.; Takamoto, M.; de Gouveia Dal Pino, E. M.; Cho, J.

    Realistic astrophysical environments are turbulent due to the extremely high Reynolds numbers of the flows. Therefore, the theories intended for describing astrophysical reconnection should not ignore the effects of turbulence. Turbulence is known to change the nature of many physical processes dramatically and in this review we claim that magnetic reconnection is not an exception. We stress that not only astrophysical turbulence is ubiquitous, but also the outflows from magnetic reconnection induce turbulence affecting the rate of turbulent reconnection. Thus turbulence must be accounted for any realistic astrophysical reconnection set up. We argue that due to the similarities of MHD turbulence in relativistic and non-relativistic cases the theory of magnetic reconnection developed for the non-relativistic case can be extended to the relativistic case and we provide numerical simulations that support this conjecture. We also provide quantitative comparisons of the theoretical predictions and results of numerical experiments, including the situations when turbulent reconnection is self-driven, i.e. the turbulence in the system is generated by the reconnection process itself. In addition, we consider observational testing of turbulent reconnection as well as numerous implications of the theory. The former includes the Sun and solar wind reconnection, while the latter include the process of reconnection diffusion induced by turbulent reconnection, the acceleration of energetic particles, bursts of turbulent reconnection related to black hole sources and gamma ray bursts. Finally, we explain why turbulent reconnection cannot be explained by turbulent resistivity or derived through the mean field approach. We also argue that the tearing reconnection transfers to fully turbulent reconnection in 3D astrophysically relevant settings with realistically high Reynolds numbers.

  7. Oxygen acceleration in magnetotail reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Haoming; Lapenta, Giovanni; Walker, Raymond J.; Schriver, David; El-Alaoui, Mostafa; Berchem, Jean

    2017-01-01

    Motivated by the observed high concentration of oxygen ions in the magnetotail during enhanced geomagnetic activity, we investigated the oxygen acceleration in magnetotail reconnection by using 2.5-D implicit particle-in-cell simulations. We found that lobe oxygen ions can enter the downstream outflow region, i.e., the outflow region downstream of the dipolarization fronts (DFs) or the reconnection jet fronts. Without entering the reconnection exhaust, they are accelerated by the Hall electric field. They can populate the downstream outflow region before the DFs arrive there. This acceleration is in addition to acceleration in the exhaust by the Hall and reconnection electric fields. Oxygen ions in the preexisting current sheet are reflected by the propagating DF creating a reflected beam with a hook shape in phase space. This feature can be applied to deduce a history of the DF speed. However, it is difficult to observe for protons because their typical thermal velocity in the plasma sheet is comparable those of the DF and the reflection speed. The oxygen ions from the lobes and the preexisting current sheet form multiple beams in the distribution function in front of the DF. By comparing oxygen concentrations of 50%, 5%, and 0% with the same current sheet thickness, we found that the DF thickness is proportional to the oxygen concentration in the preexisting current sheet. All the simulation results can be used to compare with the observations from the Magnetospheric Multiscale mission.

  8. Statistics of Reconnection-driven Turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kowal, Grzegorz; Falceta-Gonçalves, Diego A.; Lazarian, Alex; Vishniac, Ethan T.

    2017-04-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a process that changes magnetic field topology in highly conducting fluids. Within the standard Sweet–Parker model, this process would be too slow to explain observations (e.g., solar flares). In reality, the process must be ubiquitous as astrophysical fluids are magnetized and motions of fluid elements necessarily entail crossing of magnetic frozen-in field lines and magnetic reconnection. In the presence of turbulence, the reconnection is independent of microscopic plasma properties and may be much faster than previously thought, as proposed in Lazarian & Vishniac and tested in Kowal et al. However, the considered turbulence in the Lazarian–Vishniac model was imposed externally. In this work, we consider reconnection-driven magnetized turbulence in realistic three-dimensional geometry initiated by stochastic noise. We demonstrate through numerical simulations that the stochastic reconnection is able to self-generate turbulence through interactions between the reconnection outflows. We analyze the statistical properties of velocity fluctuations using power spectra and anisotropy scaling in the local reference frame, which demonstrates that the reconnection produces Kolmogorov-like turbulence, compatible with the Goldreich & Sridhar model. Anisotropy statistics are, however, strongly affected by the dynamics of flows generated by the reconnection process. Once the broad turbulent region is formed, the typical anisotropy scaling {l}\\parallel \\propto {l}\\perp 2/3 is formed, especially for high resolution models, where the broader range of scales is available. The decay of reconnection outflows to turbulent-like fluctuations, characterized by different anisotropy scalings, strongly depends on the β plasma parameter. Moreover, the estimated reconnection rates are weakly dependent on the model resolution, suggesting that no external processes are required to make reconnection fast.

  9. Turbulent Reconnection in the Magnetic Reconnection Experiment (MRX)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dorfman, S.; Ji, H.; Yamada, M.; Oz, E.; Yoo, J.; Daughton, W.; Roytershteyn, V.

    2009-11-01

    One of the key open questions in Magnetic Reconnection is the nature of the mechanism that governs the reconnection rate in real astrophysical and laboratory systems. For collisonless plasmas, the Hall effect removes an important bottleneck to fast reconnection as the heavier ions exit the reconnection layer over a broader region [1]. However, the Hall term cannot balance the reconnection electric field at the layer center, and the 2-D, collisionless expression for the electric field due to particle dynamics [2] has been shown to be insufficient in the Magnetic Reconnection Experiment (MRX) [1,3]. Turbulent 3-D effects such as lower hybrid frequency range fluctuations [4] may play an important role in fast reconnection in MRX. These electromagnetic fluctuations tend to be associated with high local currents and a rapid local reconnection rate. The precise relation of these fluctuations and associated 3-D asymmetries to fast reconnection is a topic of active investigations; the most up to date results will be discussed. This work was supported by NDSEG, DOE, NASA, and NSF.[4pt] [1] Y. Ren, et al., Phys. Plasmas 15, 082113 (2008). [2] M. Hesse, et al., Phys. Plasmas, 6:1781 (1999). [3] S. Dorfman, et al., Phys. Plasmas 15, 102107 (2008). [4] H. Ji, et al., Phys.Rev.Lett. 92 (2004) 115001.

  10. Plasma Heating During Magnetic Reconnection: Implications for Turbulent Dissipation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shay, M. A.; Parashar, T.; Matthaeus, W. H.; Haggerty, C. C.

    2015-12-01

    Current sheets and associated intermittency are known to be prevalent in many turbulent plasmas and have been shown to be correlated with heating in observations of solar wind turbulence [1] and dissipation in kinetic particle-in-cell simulations [5]. Most intriguing, recent PIC simulations have found that the relative ion to electron heating ratio is strongly dependent on the turbulence amplitude [3]. An important question is whether magnetic reconnection is an important mechanism responsible for this heating. Studies focused on laminar reconnection have made significant progress recently on the magnitude and physics responsible for heating during magnetic reconnection [2,4]. The ambient Alfven speed of plasma flowing into the reconnection region plays a critical role, with heating initially taking the form of counterstreaming beams generated by non-local acceleration mechanism. However, there are significant uncertainties with how to link this basic reconnection heating with generic heating in a turbulent plasma. In this presentation, our current understanding of heating due to reconnection will be reviewed, and the factors determining the applicability of this heating to turbulent dissipation and heating will be discussed. These ideas will be explored through the comparison of kinetic PIC simulations of turbulence with reconnection heating models. Key aspects that will be examined are the effect of differing turbulent conditions on the magnitude and anisotropy of the heating, as well as the ion to electron heating ratio. [1] Osman et al., ApJ Letters, 727, L11, 2011. [2] Phan, et al., GRL, 40, 50917, 2013. [3] Wu et al., ApJ Letters, 763, L30, 2013. [4] Shay et al., Phys. Plasmas, 21, 122902, 2014. [5] Wan et al., PRL, 114, 175002, 2015.

  11. Magnetohydrodynamic Turbulence Mediated by Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boldyrev, Stanislav; Loureiro, Nuno F.

    2017-08-01

    Magnetic field fluctuations in magnetohydrodynamic turbulence can be viewed as current sheets that are progressively more anisotropic at smaller scales. As suggested by Loureiro & Boldyrev and Mallet et al., below a certain critical thickness, {λ }c, such current sheets become tearing-unstable. We propose that the tearing instability changes the effective alignment of the magnetic field lines in such a way as to balance the eddy turnover rate at all scales smaller than {λ }c. As a result, turbulent fluctuations become progressively less anisotropic at smaller scales, with the alignment angle increasing as θ ∼ {(λ /{λ }* )}-4/5+β , where {λ }* ∼ {L}0{S}0-3/4 is the resistive dissipation scale. Here L 0 is the outer scale of the turbulence, S 0 is the corresponding Lundquist number, and 0≤slant β < 4/5 is a parameter. The resulting Fourier energy spectrum is E({k}\\perp )\\propto {k}\\perp -11/5+2β /3, where {k}\\perp is the wavenumber normal to the local mean magnetic field, and the critical scale is {λ }c∼ {S}L-(4-5β )/(7-20β /3). The simplest model corresponds to β = 0, in which case the predicted scaling formally agrees with one of the solutions obtained in Mallet et al. from a discrete hierarchical model of abruptly collapsing current sheets, an approach different from and complementary to ours. We also show that the reconnection-mediated interval is non-universal with respect to the dissipation mechanism. Hyper-resistivity of the form \\tilde{η }{k}2+2s leads (in the simplest case of β = 0) to the different transition scale {λ }c∼ {L}0{\\tilde{S}}0-4/(7+9s) and the energy spectrum E({k}\\perp )\\propto {k}\\perp -(11+9s)/(5+3s), where {\\tilde{S}}0 is the corresponding hyper-resistive Lundquist number.

  12. Turbulent Reconnection Rates from Cluster Observations in the Magnetosheath

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wendel, Deirdre

    2011-01-01

    The role of turbulence in producing fast reconnection rates is an important unresolved question. Scant in situ analyses exist. We apply multiple spacecraft techniques to a case of nonlinear turbulent reconnection in the magnetosheath to test various theoretical results for turbulent reconnection rates. To date, in situ estimates of the contribution of turbulence to reconnection rates have been calculated from an effective electric field derived through linear wave theory. However, estimates of reconnection rates based on fully nonlinear turbulence theories and simulations exist that are amenable to multiple spacecraft analyses. Here we present the linear and nonlinear theories and apply some of the nonlinear rates to Cluster observations of reconnecting, turbulent current sheets in the magnetosheath. We compare the results to the net reconnection rate found from the inflow speed. Ultimately, we intend to test and compare linear and nonlinear estimates of the turbulent contribution to reconnection rates and to measure the relative contributions of turbulence and the Hall effect.

  13. Turbulent Reconnection Rates from Cluster Observations in the Magneto sheath

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wendel, Deirdre

    2011-01-01

    The role of turbulence in producing fast reconnection rates is an important unresolved question. Scant in situ analyses exist. We apply multiple spacecraft techniques to a case of nonlinear turbulent reconnection in the magnetosheath to test various theoretical results for turbulent reconnection rates. To date, in situ estimates of the contribution of turbulence to reconnection rates have been calculated from an effective electric field derived through linear wave theory. However, estimates of reconnection rates based on fully nonlinear turbulence theories and simulations exist that are amenable to multiple spacecraft analyses. Here we present the linear and nonlinear theories and apply some of the nonlinear rates to Cluster observations of reconnecting, turbulent current sheets in the magnetos heath. We compare the results to the net reconnection rate found from the inflow speed. Ultimately, we intend to test and compare linear and nonlinear estimates of the turbulent contribution to reconnection rates and to measure the relative contributions of turbulence and the Hall effect.

  14. Three-Dimensional Reconnection and Turbulence in the Outer Heliosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gingell, P.; Burgess, D.; Matteini, L.

    2015-12-01

    In the outer heliosphere, close to the heliopause, we can expect the heliospheric current sheet to form a region of closely-packed, thin current sheets. These structures may be subject to an ion-kinetic tearing instability, and hence generate magnetic islands and hot populations of ions associated with magnetic reconnection. It has been suggested that reconnection processes in this environment have important implications for local particle transport, influencing the porosity of the sectored heliosheath, and for the generation of anomalous cosmic rays via acceleration at reconnection sites. We study this complex environment by means of three-dimensional hybrid simulations over long time scales, in order to capture the evolution of the system from linear growth of the tearing instability at early times, to a fully developed turbulent cascade at late times. Simulations are conducted using both force-free and Harris current sheet equilibria, with varying plasma beta and guide field angle. We discuss the evolution of the magnetic topology, and how changes in the initial conditions affect reconnection rates, particle acceleration, cross-boundary transport and magnetic spectra. We also examine the effect of including an energetic population of interstellar H+ pick-up ions. Finally, given the turbulent end state in the simulations, we also investigate the multiple current sheet system as a general scenario for driving turbulence, and as an alternative to the common methods for simulating decaying turbulence.

  15. Guide Field Reconnection Turbulence and Coronal Heating

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pueschel, M. J.; Told, D.; Terry, P. W.; Jenko, F.; Zweibel, E. G.; Zhdankin, V.; Lesch, H.

    2014-10-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a prime contender for explaining plasma heating in the solar corona. This work focuses on turbulent reconnection simulations in the strong-guide-field limit, where the gyrokinetics both captures all relevant physical effects and is numerically efficient. Continuously replenished current sheets force a quasi-stationary turbulent state, where significant levels of j . E heating can be measured. In addition, plasmoids are observed to form in the turbulence, causing secondary reconnection events through mergers. Under coronal conditions, the volumetric heating rate is evaluated as 1 . 5 ×10-3 erg cm-3 s-1, in good agreement with observations. This value scales as, in particular, the reconnecting field to the power of 1 . 8 , and the characteristic current sheet width to the power of 0 . 75 . Moreover, heating bursts associated with plasmoid mergers conform with time scales associated observationally with nanoflares. For further details on this work, as well as on the emergence of temperature anisotropies, see [M.J. Pueschel et al., Magnetic Reconnection Turbulence in Strong Guide Fields: Basic Properties and Application to Coronal Heating, accepted for publication in Astrophys. J. Suppl. Ser.].

  16. Self-generated Turbulence in Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oishi, Jeffrey S.; Mac Low, Mordecai-Mark; Collins, David C.; Tamura, Moeko

    2015-06-01

    Classical Sweet-Parker models of reconnection predict that reconnection rates depend inversely on the resistivity, usually parameterized using the dimensionless Lundquist number (S). We describe magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) simulations using a static, nested grid that show the development of a three-dimensional (3D) instability in the plane of a current sheet between reversing field lines without a guide field. The instability leads to rapid reconnection of magnetic field lines at a rate independent of S over at least the range 3.2× {{10}3}≲ S≲ 3.2× {{10}5} resolved by the simulations. We find that this instability occurs even for cases with S≲ {{10}4} that in our models appear stable to the recently described, two-dimensional, plasmoid instability. Our results suggest that 3D, MHD processes alone produce fast (resistivity independent) reconnection without recourse to kinetic effects or external turbulence. The unstable reconnection layers provide a self-consistent environment in which the extensively studied turbulent reconnection process can occur.

  17. Electron acceleration during guide field magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wan, Weigang; Lapenta, Giovanni; Delzanno, Gian Luca; Egedal, Jan

    2008-03-01

    Particle-in-cell simulations of the guide field intermittent magnetic reconnection are performed to study electron acceleration and pitch angle distributions. During the growing stage of reconnection, the power-law distribution function for the high-energy electrons and the pitch angle distributions of the low-energy electrons are obtained and compare favorably with observations by the Wind spacecraft. Direct evidence is found for the secondary acceleration during the later reconnection stage. A correlation between the generation of energetic electrons and the induced reconnection electric field is found. Energetic electrons are accelerated first around the X line, and then in the region outside the diffusion region, when the reconnection electric field has a bipolar structure. The physical mechanisms of these accelerations are discussed. The in-plane electrostatic field that traps the low-energy electrons and causes the anisotropic pitch angle distributions has been observed.

  18. Reconnection events in two-dimensional Hall magnetohydrodynamic turbulence

    SciTech Connect

    Donato, S.; Servidio, S.; Carbone, V.; Dmitruk, P.; Shay, M. A.; Matthaeus, W. H.; Cassak, P. A.

    2012-09-15

    The statistical study of magnetic reconnection events in two-dimensional turbulence has been performed by comparing numerical simulations of magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) and Hall magnetohydrodynamics (HMHD). The analysis reveals that the Hall term plays an important role in turbulence, in which magnetic islands simultaneously reconnect in a complex way. In particular, an increase of the Hall parameter, the ratio of ion skin depth to system size, broadens the distribution of reconnection rates relative to the MHD case. Moreover, in HMHD the local geometry of the reconnection region changes, manifesting bifurcated current sheets and quadrupolar magnetic field structures in analogy to laminar studies, leading locally to faster reconnection processes in this case of reconnection embedded in turbulence. This study supports the idea that the global rate of energy dissipation is controlled by the large scale turbulence, but suggests that the distribution of the reconnection rates within the turbulent system is sensitive to the microphysics at the reconnection sites.

  19. Magnetic reconnection in the turbulent magnetosheath

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yordanova, Emiliya; Vörös, Zoltan

    2017-04-01

    Magnetosheath downstream a quasi-parallel bow shock is one of the most turbulent regions in the near Earth' space. It has complex topology and it is characterized by strong fluctuations in all field and plasma parameters. The turbulence gives rise to coherent structures (vortices, flux tubes, current sheets) from MHD to kinetic (proton and electron) scales. In some parts of the region the physical processes are plasma flow dominated while in others magnetic field dominated. This dynamical behavior leads to continuous interaction between the structures providing means for turbulence to dissipate energy by processes such as magnetic reconnection. We present spacecraft observations of kinetic-scales current sheets in the magnetosheath, formed by the interaction of magnetic structures. We observe signature of magnetic reconnection, such as ion demagnetization, electron heating, electron jets and pressure anisotropy.

  20. Stochastic reacceleration of relativistic electrons by turbulent reconnection: a mechanism for cluster-scale radio emission?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brunetti, G.; Lazarian, A.

    2016-05-01

    In this paper, we investigate a situation where relativistic particles are reaccelerated diffusing across regions of reconnection and magnetic dynamo in super-Alfvenic, incompressible large-scale turbulence. We present an exploratory study of this mechanism in the intracluster medium (ICM). In view of large-scale turbulence in the ICM, we adopt a reconnection scheme that is based on turbulent reconnection and magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) turbulence. In this case, particles are accelerated and decelerated in a systematic way in reconnecting and magnetic-dynamo regions, respectively, and on longer time-scales undergo a stochastic process diffusing across these sites (similar to second-order Fermi). Our study extends on larger scales numerical studies that focused on the acceleration in and around turbulent reconnecting regions. We suggest that this mechanism may play a role in the reacceleration of relativistic electrons in galaxy clusters providing a new physical scenario to explain the origin of cluster-scale diffuse radio emission. Indeed differently from current turbulent reacceleration models proposed for example for radio haloes, this mechanism is based on the effect of large-scale incompressible and super-Alfvenic turbulence. In this new model, turbulence governs the interaction between relativistic particles and magnetic field lines that diffuse, reconnect and are stretched in the turbulent ICM.

  1. Turbulent magnetic fluctuations in laboratory reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Von Stechow, Adrian; Grulke, Olaf; Klinger, Thomas

    2016-07-01

    The role of fluctuations and turbulence is an important question in astrophysics. While direct observations in space are rare and difficult dedicated laboratory experiments provide a versatile environment for the investigation of magnetic reconnection due to their good diagnostic access and wide range of accessible plasma parameters. As such, they also provide an ideal chance for the validation of space plasma reconnection theories and numerical simulation results. In particular, we studied magnetic fluctuations within reconnecting current sheets for various reconnection parameters such as the reconnection rate, guide field, as well as plasma density and temperature. These fluctuations have been previously interpreted as signatures of current sheet plasma instabilities in space and laboratory systems. Especially in low collisionality plasmas these may provide a source of anomalous resistivity and thereby contribute a significant fraction of the reconnection rate. We present fluctuation measurements from two complementary reconnection experiments and compare them to numerical simulation results. VINETA.II (Greifswald, Germany) is a cylindrical, high guide field reconnection experiment with an open field line geometry. The reconnecting current sheet has a three-dimensional structure that is predominantly set by the magnetic pitch angle which results from the superposition of the guide field and the in-plane reconnecting field. Within this current sheet, high frequency magnetic fluctuations are observed that correlate well with the local current density and show a power law spectrum with a spectral break at the lower hybrid frequency. Their correlation lengths are found to be extremely short, but propagation is nonetheless observed with high phase velocities that match the Whistler dispersion. To date, the experiment has been run with an external driving field at frequencies higher than the ion cyclotron frequency f_{ci}, which implies that the EMHD framework applies

  2. MMS observations of magnetic reconnection in small-scale current sheets in magnetosheath turbulence.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chasapis, A.; Matthaeus, W. H.; Parashar, T.; Le Contel, O.; Retino, A.; Breuillard, H.; Khotyaintsev, Y. V.; Vaivads, A.; Lavraud, B.; Moore, T. E.; Burch, J. L.; Torbert, R. B.; Lindqvist, P. A.; Ergun, R.; Marklund, G. T.; Goodrich, K.; Wilder, F. D.; Chutter, M.; Needell, J.; Rau, D.; Dors, I.; Russell, C.; Le, G.; Magnes, W.; Strangeway, R. J.; Bromund, K. R.; Leinweber, H. K.; Plaschke, F.; Fischer, D.; Anderson, B. J.; Pollock, C.; Giles, B. L.; Paterson, W. R.; Dorelli, J.; Gershman, D. J.; Avanov, L. A.; Saito, Y.

    2016-12-01

    Magnetic reconnection occurs in thin current sheets that form in turbulent plasmas. It leads to particle heating and acceleration and is thought to play an important role for the turbulent dissipation at kinetic scales, energy. However, in situ observations are scarce and the extent of its contribution to turbulent dissipation has yet to be determined. The MMS mission allows us to closely study kinetic-scale intermittent structures that form in turbulent plasma as well as to detect thin reconnecting current sheets and examine their properties. We present the results of MMS observations in the turbulence of the Earth's magnetosheath. We performed a statistical study of small-scale intermittent structures and their role in heating and accelerating electrons. We examined one current sheet in detail which shows evidence of reconnection, focusing on the mechanisms that drive the observed heating and acceleration within it and the role of wave-particle interactions.

  3. Explosive Turbulent Magnetic Reconnection: A New Approach of MHD-Turbulent Simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoshino, Masahiro; Yokoi, Nobumitsu; Higashimori, Katsuaki

    2013-04-01

    Turbulent flows are often observed in association with magnetic reconnection in space and astrophysical plasmas, and it is often hypothesized that the turbulence can contribute to the fast magnetic reconnection through the enhancement of magnetic dissipation. In this presentation, we demonstrate that an explosive turbulent reconnection can happen by using a new turbulent MHD simulation, in which the evolution of the turbulent transport coefficients are self-consistently solved together with the standard MHD equations. In our model, the turbulent electromotive force defined by the correlation of turbulent fluctuations between v and B is added to the Ohm's law. We discuss that the level of turbulent can control the topology of reconnection, namely the transition from the Sweet-Parker reconnection to the Petscheck reconnection occurs when the level of fluctuations becomes of order of the ambient physical quantities, and show that the growth of the turbulent Petscheck reconnection becomes much faster than the conventional one.

  4. Turbulent reconnection of magnetic bipoles in stratified turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jabbari, S.; Brandenburg, A.; Mitra, Dhrubaditya; Kleeorin, N.; Rogachevskii, I.

    2016-07-01

    We consider strongly stratified forced turbulence in a plane-parallel layer with helicity and corresponding large-scale dynamo action in the lower part and non-helical turbulence in the upper. The magnetic field is found to develop strongly concentrated bipolar structures near the surface. They form elongated bands with a sharp interface between opposite polarities. Unlike earlier experiments with imposed magnetic field, the inclusion of rotation does not strongly suppress the formation of these structures. We perform a systematic numerical study of this phenomenon by varying magnetic Reynolds number, scale-separation ratio, and Coriolis number. We focus on the formation of a current sheet between bipolar regions where reconnection of oppositely oriented field lines occurs. We determine the reconnection rate by measuring either the inflow velocity in the vicinity of the current sheet or by measuring the electric field in the reconnection region. We demonstrate that for large Lundquist numbers, S > 103, the reconnection rate is nearly independent of S in agreement with results of recent numerical simulations performed by other groups in simpler settings.

  5. INTERCHANGE RECONNECTION IN A TURBULENT CORONA

    SciTech Connect

    Rappazzo, A. F.; Matthaeus, W. H.; Ruffolo, D.; Servidio, S.; Velli, M.

    2012-10-10

    Magnetic reconnection at the interface between coronal holes and loops, the so-called interchange reconnection, can release the hotter, denser plasma from magnetically confined regions into the heliosphere, contributing to the formation of the highly variable slow solar wind. The interchange process is often thought to develop at the apex of streamers or pseudo-streamers, near Y- and X-type neutral points, but slow streams with loop composition have been recently observed along fanlike open field lines adjacent to closed regions, far from the apex. However, coronal heating models, with magnetic field lines shuffled by convective motions, show that reconnection can occur continuously in unipolar magnetic field regions with no neutral points: photospheric motions induce a magnetohydrodynamic turbulent cascade in the coronal field that creates the necessary small scales, where a sheared magnetic field component orthogonal to the strong axial field is created locally and can reconnect. We propose that a similar mechanism operates near and around boundaries between open and closed regions inducing a continual stochastic rearrangement of connectivity. We examine a reduced magnetohydrodynamic model of a simplified interface region between open and closed corona threaded by a strong unipolar magnetic field. This boundary is not stationary, becomes fractal, and field lines change connectivity continuously, becoming alternatively open and closed. This model suggests that slow wind may originate everywhere along loop-coronal-hole boundary regions and can account naturally and simply for outflows at and adjacent to such boundaries and for the observed diffusion of slow wind around the heliospheric current sheet.

  6. Particle acceleration and reconnection in the solar wind

    SciTech Connect

    Zank, G. P.; Hunana, P.; Mostafavi, P.; Le Roux, J. A.; Webb, G. M.; Khabarova, O.; Cummings, A. C.; Stone, E. C.; Decker, R. B.

    2016-03-25

    An emerging paradigm for the dissipation of magnetic turbulence in the supersonic solar wind is via localized quasi-2D small-scale magnetic island reconnection processes. An advection-diffusion transport equation for a nearly isotropic particle distribution describes particle transport and energization in a region of interacting magnetic islands [1; 2]. The dominant charged particle energization processes are 1) the electric field induced by quasi-2D magnetic island merging, and 2) magnetic island contraction. The acceleration of charged particles in a “sea of magnetic islands” in a super-Alfvénic flow, and the energization of particles by combined diffusive shock acceleration (DSA) and downstream magnetic island reconnection processes are discussed.

  7. Intermittent energy dissipation by turbulent reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fu, H. S.; Vaivads, A.; Khotyaintsev, Y. V.; André, M.; Cao, J. B.; Olshevsky, V.; Eastwood, J. P.; Retinò, A.

    2017-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection—the process responsible for many explosive phenomena in both nature and laboratory—is efficient at dissipating magnetic energy into particle energy. To date, exactly how this dissipation happens remains unclear, owing to the scarcity of multipoint measurements of the "diffusion region" at the sub-ion scale. Here we report such a measurement by Cluster—four spacecraft with separation of 1/5 ion scale. We discover numerous current filaments and magnetic nulls inside the diffusion region of magnetic reconnection, with the strongest currents appearing at spiral nulls (O-lines) and the separatrices. Inside each current filament, kinetic-scale turbulence is significantly increased and the energy dissipation, E' ṡ j, is 100 times larger than the typical value. At the jet reversal point, where radial nulls (X-lines) are detected, the current, turbulence, and energy dissipations are surprisingly small. All these features clearly demonstrate that energy dissipation in magnetic reconnection occurs at O-lines but not X-lines.

  8. Gyro-induced acceleration of magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Comisso, L.; Grasso, D.; Waelbroeck, F. L.; Borgogno, D.

    2013-09-15

    The linear and nonlinear evolution of magnetic reconnection in collisionless high-temperature plasmas with a strong guide field is analyzed on the basis of a two-dimensional gyrofluid model. The linear growth rate of the reconnecting instability is compared to analytical calculations over the whole spectrum of linearly unstable wave numbers. In the strongly unstable regime (large Δ′), the nonlinear evolution of the reconnecting instability is found to undergo two distinctive acceleration phases separated by a stall phase in which the instantaneous growth rate decreases. The first acceleration phase is caused by the formation of strong electric fields close to the X-point due to ion gyration, while the second acceleration phase is driven by the development of an open Petschek-like configuration due to both ion and electron temperature effects. Furthermore, the maximum instantaneous growth rate is found to increase dramatically over its linear value for decreasing diffusion layers. This is a consequence of the fact that the peak instantaneous growth rate becomes weakly dependent on the microscopic plasma parameters if the diffusion region thickness is sufficiently smaller than the equilibrium magnetic field scale length. When this condition is satisfied, the peak reconnection rate asymptotes to a constant value.

  9. Influence of Spontaneously Generated Turbulence on Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daughton, William; Roytershteyn, Vadim; Karimabadi, Homa

    2012-10-01

    The 3D dynamics of reconnection is examined for electron-positron plasmas within Harris sheet geometry with a guide field. This configuration is unstable to tearing modes at resonant surfaces across the layer, corresponding to oblique angles relative to 2D models. Vlasov theory predicts a spectrum of oblique modes which can destroy the flux surfaces and produce interacting flux ropes. These structures coalesce to larger scales leading to the continual formation and break-up of new current sheets and the generation of turbulence. The fluctuation spectrum is highly anisotropic and is characterized by two power-laws with a break at k di˜1, where di is the inertial length. In the large 3D simulations, the dissipation rate is reduced by ˜40% relative to small 2D cases which are steady and laminar. In both limits, the reconnection remains fast (i.e. Alfv'enic), is insensitive to the system size and ultimately occurs within inertial-scale current sheets. These results imply that the physics responsible for setting the time scale is not radically altered by the turbulence. However, the results indicate that a larger fraction of the magnetic energy is accessible in 3D and that many more particles are accelerated into the high energy tails due to the turbulence.

  10. Multiple Spacecraft Study of the Impact of Turbulence on Reconnection Rates

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wendel, Deirdre; Goldstein, Melvyn; Figueroa-Vinas, Adolfo; Adrian, Mark; Sahraoui, Fouad

    2011-01-01

    Magnetic turbulence and secondary island formation have reemerged as possible explanations for fast reconnection. Recent three-dimensional simulations reveal the formation of secondary islands that serve to shorten the current sheet and increase the accelerating electric field, while both simulations and observations witness electron holes whose collapse energizes electrons. However, few data studies have explicitly investigated the effect of turbulence and islands on the reconnection rate. We present a more comprehensive analysis of the effect of turbulence and islands on reconnection rates observed in space. Our approach takes advantage of multiple spacecraft to find the location of the spacecraft relative to the inflow and the outflow, to estimate the reconnection electric field, to indicate the presence and size of islands, and to determine wave vectors indicating turbulence. A superposed epoch analysis provides independent estimates of spatial scales and a reconnection electric field. We apply k-filtering and a new method adopted from seismological analyses to identify the wavevectors. From several case studies of reconnection events, we obtain preliminary estimates of the spectral scaling law, identify wave modes, and present a method for finding the reconnection electric field associated with the wave modes.

  11. Plasmoid Instabilities Mediated Three-Dimensional Magnetohydrodynamic Turbulent Reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Huang, Yi-min; Guo, Fan

    2015-07-21

    After some introductory remarks on fast reconnection in resistive MHD due to plasmoid instability, oblique tearing modes in 3D, and previous studies on 3D turbulent reconnection, the subject is presented under the following topics: 3D simulation setup, time evolution of the 3D simulation, comparison with Sweet-Parker and 2D plasmoid reconnection, and diagnostics of the turbulent state (decomposition of mean fields and fluctuations, power spectra of energy fluctuations, structure function and eddy anisotropy with respect to local magnetic field). Three primary conclusions were reached: (1) The results suggest that 3D plasmoid instabilities can lead to self-generated turbulent reconnection (evidence of energy cascade and development of inertial range, energy fluctuations preferentially align with the local magnetic field, which is one of the characteristics of MHD turbulence); (2) The turbulence is highly inhomogeneous, due to the presence of magnetic shear and outflow jets (conventional MHD turbulence theories or phenomenologies may not be applicable – e.g. scale-dependent anisotropy as predicted by Goldreich & Sridhar is not found); (3) 3D turbulent reconnection is different from 2D plasmoid-dominated reconnection in many aspects. However, in fully developed state, reconnection rates in 2D and 3D are comparable — this result needs to be further checked in higher S.

  12. Statistical Properties of Magnetic Reconnection in MHD turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Servidio, Sergio; Matthaeus, William; Cassak, Paul; Shay, Michael; Dmitruk, Pablo

    2009-11-01

    Magnetic reconnection is an integral part of MHD turbulence[1] in that the fragmentation of magnetic eddies into smaller structures necessarily involves change of magnetic topology. To better understand this relationship, recently the properties of thousands of magnetic reconnection events in moderate Reynolds number MHD turbulence have been studied [1] using 2D spectral method simulations of compressible and incompressible MHD. Reconnection between magnetic islands, different in size and energy, occurs locally and sporadically in time. The associated reconnection rates are distributed over a wide range of values and scale with the geometry of the diffusion region. Matching classical turbulence analysis with the Sweet-Parker theory, the main statistical features of these multi-scale reconnection events are identified. Magnetic reconnection in turbulence can be described through an asymmetric Sweet-Parker model, in which the parameters that control the reconnection rates are determined by turbulence itself. This new and general perspective on reconnection is relevant in space and astrophysical systems, where plasma is generally in a fully nonlinear regime. [1] W. Matthaeus and S. Lamkin, Phys. Fluids, 29, 2513 (1986). [2] S. Servidio et al, PRL, 102, 115003 (2009).

  13. Magnetic Reconnection: A Powerful Cosmic Particle Accelerator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Fan

    2015-11-01

    Astrophysical magnetic reconnection sites have long been expected to be sources of high-energy particles. Recent observations of high-energy gamma-ray flares from the Crab nebula and hard X-ray emission from solar flares have motivated us to better understand magnetic reconnection and its associated particle acceleration in plasma conditions where the magnetic energy is dominant. We will present fully kinetic particle-in-cell simulations of anti-parallel magnetic reconnection in the highly magnetized regime (the magnetization parameter sigma >> 1 or plasma beta << 1). The magnetic energy is converted efficiently into kinetic energy of nonthermal relativistic particles in a power-law spectrum. For a sufficiently large system and strong magnetic field, the power-law index approaches ``-1''. The dominant acceleration mechanism is a first-order Fermi process accomplished through the curvature drift motion of particles in magnetic flux tubes along the electric field induced by fast plasma flows. We will show simulations in three dimensions and with open boundary conditions. We will present an analytical model for the formation of power-law distribution and show the nonthermal distribution may be a common feature of magnetically dominated reconnection. Collaborators: Hui Li, William Daughton, Yi-Hsin Liu, Xiaocan Li

  14. The Development of Drift Wave Turbulence in Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McMurtrie, L.; Drake, J. F.; Swisdak, M. M.

    2013-12-01

    An important feature in collisionless magnetic reconnection is the development of sharp discontinuities along the separatrices bounding the Alfvenic outflow. The typical scale length of these features is ρs (the Larmor radius based on the sound speed) for guide field reconnection. Temperature gradients in the inflowing plasma (as might be found in the magnetopause) can lead to instabilities at these separatrices, specifically drift wave turbulence. We present standalone 2D and 3D PIC simulations of drift wave turbulence to investigate scaling properties and growth rates. Further investigations of the relative importance of drift wave turbulence in the development of reconnection will also be considered.

  15. Magnetohydrodynamic Turbulence and Reconnection in the Magnetotail

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    El-Alaoui, Mostafa; Richard, Robert L.; Ashour-Abdalla, Maha; Goldstein, Melvyn L.; Walker, Raymond J.

    2011-01-01

    We have used a global MHD simulation with high spatial resolution to investigate the origin and properties of turbulence in the plasma sheet. In this simulation we imposed a steady southward IMF with a magnitude of 5 nT at the upstream simulation boundary for more than three hours followed by ninety minutes of northward IMF of the same magnitude. The solar wind number density was 20 cm-3, the thermal pressure was 20 pPa, and the velocity was 500 km/s in the x direction. The moderately high dynamic pressure confined the magnetotail to the high-grid resolution region. Even for these nominal solar wind parameters and steady driving the plasma sheet became turbulent. The power spectral densities and probability distribution functions computed from the simulations were comparable to those obtained from spacecraft observations. The largest scale vortices were associated with reconnection outflows and, in the southward IMF case, with the diversion of high speed flows in the near-Earth region. Both time and space domain analyses revealed that there were three scales present, the large scale of the driving processes, the intermediate inertial scale and the dissipative scale.

  16. Particle Acceleration via Reconnection Processes in the Supersonic Solar Wind

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zank, G. P.; le Roux, J. A.; Webb, G. M.; Dosch, A.; Khabarova, O.

    2014-12-01

    An emerging paradigm for the dissipation of magnetic turbulence in the supersonic solar wind is via localized small-scale reconnection processes, essentially between quasi-2D interacting magnetic islands. Charged particles trapped in merging magnetic islands can be accelerated by the electric field generated by magnetic island merging and the contraction of magnetic islands. We derive a gyrophase-averaged transport equation for particles experiencing pitch-angle scattering and energization in a super-Alfvénic flowing plasma experiencing multiple small-scale reconnection events. A simpler advection-diffusion transport equation for a nearly isotropic particle distribution is derived. The dominant charged particle energization processes are (1) the electric field induced by quasi-2D magnetic island merging and (2) magnetic island contraction. The magnetic island topology ensures that charged particles are trapped in regions where they experience repeated interactions with the induced electric field or contracting magnetic islands. Steady-state solutions of the isotropic transport equation with only the induced electric field and a fixed source yield a power-law spectrum for the accelerated particles with index α = -(3 + MA )/2, where MA is the Alfvén Mach number. Considering only magnetic island contraction yields power-law-like solutions with index -3(1 + τ c /(8τdiff)), where τ c /τdiff is the ratio of timescales between magnetic island contraction and charged particle diffusion. The general solution is a power-law-like solution with an index that depends on the Alfvén Mach number and the timescale ratio τdiff/τ c . Observed power-law distributions of energetic particles observed in the quiet supersonic solar wind at 1 AU may be a consequence of particle acceleration associated with dissipative small-scale reconnection processes in a turbulent plasma, including the widely reported c -5 (c particle speed) spectra observed by Fisk & Gloeckler and Mewaldt et

  17. The effect of turbulence on 2D magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loureiro, Nuno

    2010-05-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a well known plasma process believed to lie at the heart of a variety of phenomena such as sub-storms in the Earth's magnetosphere, solar/stellar and accretion-disk flares, sawteeth activity in fusion devices, etc. During reconnection, the global magnetic field topology changes rapidly, leading to the violent release of magnetic energy. One of the outstanding theoretical challenges in this field is the understanding of the mechanism(s) responsible for such rapid changes. In single-fluid MHD, it is believed that magnetic reconnection is well described by the Sweet-Parker theory (SP), which, however, is orders of magnitude too slow to explain observations. In many cases of interest, reconnection takes place in plasmas which are fundamentally collisionless, and which cannot, therefore, be described by MHD theory. Indeed, a vast amount of numerical studies suggest that fast reconnection can be obtained when kinetic physics becomes important. However, in many astrophysical situations (e.g., inside stars and accretion disks) the density is so high that the reconnection layer is collisional and resistive MHD should apply. How, then, can reconnection be fast in these environments? Missing from the SP picture is that most, if not all, environments where reconnection occurs are likely to be turbulent. Theoretical arguments exist [Lazarian & Vishniac, ApJ 517, 700 (1999)] (LV) suggesting that indeed turbulence can significantly enhance the reconnection rate, but only in 3D. In this talk, we present the results of an extensive, high-resolution, numerical study of the effect of small-scale background turbulence on 2D magnetic reconnection [Loureiro et al., MNRAS 399, 1 (2009)]. We show that, contrary to theoretical expectations, turbulence has a very significant effect in speeding-up the 2D reconnection process, yielding a reconnection rate whose dependence on resistivity (ν) is extremely weak and is even consistent with an ν-independent value. We

  18. The role of magnetic reconnection on astrophysical jets launching and particle acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Gouveia Dal Pino, Elisabete

    2012-07-01

    Magnetic reconnection events like those associated to solar flares can be also a very powerful mechanism operating on accretion disk/jet systems. We have recently found that the magnetic power released in fast reconnection flares is more than sufficient to accelerate relativistic plasmons and produce the observed radio luminosity of the nuclear jets associated both to galactic stellar mass black holes and low luminous active galactic nuclei (AGNs). The famous observed correlation between the radio luminosity and the black hole mass of these sources, spanning ^10^9 orders of magnitude in mass, can be naturally explained in this model as simply due to the magnetic reconnection activity at the jet launching region of the accretion disk coronae of these sources. A similar process may explain the observed x-ray flares in young stars (YSOs) as well. In this talk, we review this mechanism and show results of numerical MHD tests of its validity. Also, particle acceleration in the magnetic reconnection sites of these sources can be rather efficient . In this talk, we will also discuss this acceleration process showing the energy distribution evolution of several thousands of test particles injected in a three-dimensional MHD domain of magnetic reconnection with embedded turbulence. The particle acceleration rate, which depends on the reconnection rate, is highly enhanced in this case. This is because reconnection becomes fast and independent of magnetic resistivity in the presence of turbulence and allows the formation of a thick volume in the current sheet filled with multiple, simultaneously reconnecting magnetic fluxes. The particles trapped within this volume then suffer several head-on scatterings with the contracting magnetic fluctuations in a first-order Fermi process. Particles are thus exponentially accelerated to energies which are several orders of magnitude larger than their injected energy.

  19. Three-Dimensional Turbulent Reconnection Induced by the Plasmoid Instability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharjee, A.; Huang, Y. M.

    2014-12-01

    It has been established that the Sweet-Parker current layer in high-Lundquist-number reconnection is unstable to the super-Alfvenic plasmoid instability. Past two-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic simulations have demonstrated that the plasmoid instability leads to a new regime in which the Sweet-Parker current layer evolves into a chain of plasmoids connected by secondary current sheets and the averaged reconnection rate becomes nearly independent of the Lundquist number. In a three-dimensional configuration with a guide field, the additional degree of freedom allows plasmoid instabilities to grow at oblique angles [S. Baalrud et al. Phys. Plasmas 19, 022101 (2012)] and develop the complex dynamics of flux ropes which overlap, cause field-line stochasticization, and self-generate a turbulent state. Three-dimensional simulations in the high-Lundquist-number regime show the formation of cigar-shaped eddies elongated in the direction of the local magnetic field, which is a signature of anisotropic MHD turbulence. Furthermore, the energy fluctuation spectra are found to satisfy power laws in the inertial range. The averaged 3D reconnection rate in the self-generated turbulent state is of the order of a hundredth of the characteristic Alfven speed, which is an order of magnitude lower than the reconnection rate reported in recent studies of externally driven 3D turbulent reconnection. The physical reasons for these differences will be discussed.

  20. Turbulent Magnetohydrodynamic Reconnection Mediated by the Plasmoid Instability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Yi-Min; Bhattacharjee, A.

    2016-02-01

    It has been established that the Sweet-Parker current layer in high Lundquist number reconnection is unstable to the super-Alfvénic plasmoid instability. Past two-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic simulations have demonstrated that the plasmoid instability leads to a new regime where the Sweet-Parker current layer changes into a chain of plasmoids connected by secondary current sheets, and the averaged reconnection rate becomes nearly independent of the Lundquist number. In this work, a three-dimensional simulation with a guide field shows that the additional degree of freedom allows plasmoid instabilities to grow at oblique angles, which interact and lead to self-generated turbulent reconnection. The averaged reconnection rate in the self-generated turbulent state is of the order of a hundredth of the characteristic Alfvén speed, which is similar to the two-dimensional result but is an order of magnitude lower than the fastest reconnection rate reported in recent studies of externally driven three-dimensional turbulent reconnection. Kinematic and magnetic energy fluctuations both form elongated eddies along the direction of the local magnetic field, which is a signature of anisotropic magnetohydrodynamic turbulence. Both energy fluctuations satisfy power-law spectra in the inertial range, where the magnetic energy spectral index is in the range from -2.3 to -2.1, while the kinetic energy spectral index is slightly steeper, in the range from -2.5 to -2.3. The anisotropy of turbulence eddies is found to be nearly scale-independent, in contrast with the prediction of the Goldreich-Sridhar theory for anisotropic turbulence in a homogeneous plasma permeated by a uniform magnetic field.

  1. TURBULENT MAGNETOHYDRODYNAMIC RECONNECTION MEDIATED BY THE PLASMOID INSTABILITY

    SciTech Connect

    Huang, Yi-Min; Bhattacharjee, A.

    2016-02-10

    It has been established that the Sweet–Parker current layer in high Lundquist number reconnection is unstable to the super-Alfvénic plasmoid instability. Past two-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic simulations have demonstrated that the plasmoid instability leads to a new regime where the Sweet–Parker current layer changes into a chain of plasmoids connected by secondary current sheets, and the averaged reconnection rate becomes nearly independent of the Lundquist number. In this work, a three-dimensional simulation with a guide field shows that the additional degree of freedom allows plasmoid instabilities to grow at oblique angles, which interact and lead to self-generated turbulent reconnection. The averaged reconnection rate in the self-generated turbulent state is of the order of a hundredth of the characteristic Alfvén speed, which is similar to the two-dimensional result but is an order of magnitude lower than the fastest reconnection rate reported in recent studies of externally driven three-dimensional turbulent reconnection. Kinematic and magnetic energy fluctuations both form elongated eddies along the direction of the local magnetic field, which is a signature of anisotropic magnetohydrodynamic turbulence. Both energy fluctuations satisfy power-law spectra in the inertial range, where the magnetic energy spectral index is in the range from −2.3 to −2.1, while the kinetic energy spectral index is slightly steeper, in the range from −2.5 to −2.3. The anisotropy of turbulence eddies is found to be nearly scale-independent, in contrast with the prediction of the Goldreich–Sridhar theory for anisotropic turbulence in a homogeneous plasma permeated by a uniform magnetic field.

  2. Acceleration mechanisms 2: force-free reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Colgate, S.

    2004-05-01

    We propose that nearly every accelerated CR was part of the parallel current that maintains all force-free (f-f) magnetic fields. Charged particles are accelerated by the E-parallel (to the magnetic filed B) produced by reconnection. The inferred total energy in extra-galactic cosmic rays is 10^(60) ergs per galaxy spacing volume, provided that acceleration mechanisms assumed do not preferentially only accelerate ultra high energy cosmic rays (UHECRs). This total energy is about 10^5 times the parent galactic CR or magnetic energy. The formation energy of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) at galaxy centers, 10^(62) ergs, becomes the only feasible source. An efficient dynamo process converts gravitational free energy into magnetic energy in an accretion disk around a SMBH. Aided by Keplerian winding, this dynamo converts a poloidal seed field into f-f fields, which are transported into the general inter-galactic medium (IGM). This magnetic energy is also efficiently converted into particle energies, as evidenced by the radiation from energetic particles. CRs of the IGM are then the result of the continuing dissipation, in a Hubble time, of this magnetic energy, by acceleration within the f-f fields confined within the super-galactic walls and filaments of large scale structures. In addition, most UHECRs are diffusively lost to the galactic voids before the GZK attenuation time, 10^8 years and hence are lost from view. Similarly within the galaxy we expect that the winding by accretion are the sources of galactic CR acceleration. [edited

  3. Radiation from Accelerated Particles in Shocks and Reconnections

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nishikawa, K. I.; Choi, E. J.; Min, K. W.; Niemiec, J.; Zhang, B.; Hardee, P.; Mizuno, Y.; Medvedev, M.; Nordlund, A.; Frederiksen, J.; Sol, H.; Pohl, M.; Hartmann, D. H.; Fishman, G. J.

    2012-01-01

    Plasma instabilities are responsible not only for the onset and mediation of collisionless shocks but also for the associated acceleration of particles. We have investigated particle acceleration and shock structure associated with an unmagnetized relativistic electron-positron jet propagating into an unmagnetized electron-positron plasma. Cold jet electrons are thermalized and slowed while the ambient electrons are swept up to create a partially developed hydrodynamic-like shock structure. In the leading shock, electron density increases by a factor of about 3.5 in the simulation frame. Strong electromagnetic fields are generated in the trailing shock and provide an emission site. These magnetic fields contribute to the electrons transverse deflection and, more generally, relativistic acceleration behind the shock. We have calculated, self-consistently, the radiation from electrons accelerated in the turbulent magnetic fields. We found that the synthetic spectra depend on the Lorentz factor of the jet, its thermal temperature and strength of the generated magnetic fields. Our initial results of a jet-ambient interaction with anti-parallelmagnetic fields show pile-up of magnetic fields at the colliding shock, which may lead to reconnection and associated particle acceleration. We will investigate the radiation in a transient stage as a possible generation mechanism of precursors of prompt emission. In our simulations we calculate the radiation from electrons in the shock region. The detailed properties of this radiation are important for understanding the complex time evolution and spectral structure in gamma-ray bursts, relativistic jets, and supernova remnants.

  4. Experimental Study of Current-Driven Turbulence During Magnetic Reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Porkolab, Miklos; Egedal-Pedersen, Jan; Fox, William

    2010-08-31

    CMPD Final Report Experimental Study of Current-Driven Turbulence During Magnetic Reconnection Miklos Porkolab, PI, Jan Egedal, co-PI, William Fox, graduate student. This is the final report for Grant DE-FC02-04ER54786, MIT Participation in the Center for Multiscale Plasma Dynamics, which was active from 8/1/2004 to 7/31/2010. This Grant supported the thesis work of one MIT graduate student, William Fox, The thesis research consisted of an experimental study of the fluctuations arising during magnetic reconnection in plasmas on the Versatile Toroidal Facility (VTF) at MIT Plasma Science and Fusion Center (PSFC). The thesis was submitted and accepted by the MIT physics Department,. Fox, Experimental Study of Current-Driven Turbulence During Magnetic Reconnection, Ph.D. Thesis, MIT (2009). In the VTF experiment reconnection and current-sheet formation is driven by quickly changing currents in a specially arranged set of internal conductors. Previous work on this device [Egedal, et al, PRL 98, 015003, (2007)] identified a spontaneous reconnection regime. In this work fluctuations were studied using impedance-matched, high-bandwidth Langmuir probes. Strong, broadband fluctuations, with frequencies extending from near the lower-hybrid frequency [fLH = (fcefci)1/2] to the electron cyclotron frequency fce were found to arise during the reconnection events. Based on frequency and wavelength measurements, lower-hybrid waves and Trivelpiece-Gould waves were identified. The lower-hybrid waves are easiest to drive with strong perpendicular drifts or gradients which arise due to the reconnection events; an appealing possibility is strong temperature gradients. The Trivelpiece-Gould modes can result from kinetic, bump-on-tail instability of a runaway electron population energized by the reconnection events. We also observed that the turbulence is often spiky, consisting of discrete positive-potential spikes, which were identified as electron phase-space holes, a class of

  5. Particle acceleration via reconnection processes in the supersonic solar wind

    SciTech Connect

    Zank, G. P.; Le Roux, J. A.; Webb, G. M.; Dosch, A.; Khabarova, O.

    2014-12-10

    An emerging paradigm for the dissipation of magnetic turbulence in the supersonic solar wind is via localized small-scale reconnection processes, essentially between quasi-2D interacting magnetic islands. Charged particles trapped in merging magnetic islands can be accelerated by the electric field generated by magnetic island merging and the contraction of magnetic islands. We derive a gyrophase-averaged transport equation for particles experiencing pitch-angle scattering and energization in a super-Alfvénic flowing plasma experiencing multiple small-scale reconnection events. A simpler advection-diffusion transport equation for a nearly isotropic particle distribution is derived. The dominant charged particle energization processes are (1) the electric field induced by quasi-2D magnetic island merging and (2) magnetic island contraction. The magnetic island topology ensures that charged particles are trapped in regions where they experience repeated interactions with the induced electric field or contracting magnetic islands. Steady-state solutions of the isotropic transport equation with only the induced electric field and a fixed source yield a power-law spectrum for the accelerated particles with index α = –(3 + M{sub A} )/2, where M{sub A} is the Alfvén Mach number. Considering only magnetic island contraction yields power-law-like solutions with index –3(1 + τ {sub c}/(8τ{sub diff})), where τ {sub c}/τ{sub diff} is the ratio of timescales between magnetic island contraction and charged particle diffusion. The general solution is a power-law-like solution with an index that depends on the Alfvén Mach number and the timescale ratio τ{sub diff}/τ {sub c}. Observed power-law distributions of energetic particles observed in the quiet supersonic solar wind at 1 AU may be a consequence of particle acceleration associated with dissipative small-scale reconnection processes in a turbulent plasma, including the widely reported c {sup –5} (c particle

  6. Impulsive reconnection: 3D onset and stagnation in turbulent paradigms

    SciTech Connect

    Sears, Jason A; Intrator, Thomas P; Weber, Tom; Lapenta, Giovanni; Lazarian, Alexander

    2010-12-14

    Reconnection processes are ubiquitous in solar coronal loops, the earth's magnetotail, galactic jets, and laboratory configurations such as spheromaks and Z pinches. It is believed that reconnection dynamics are often closely linked to turbulence. In these phenomena, the bursty onset of reconnection is partly determined by a balance of macroscopic MHD forces. In a turbulent paradigm, it is reasonable to suppose that there exist many individual reconnection sites, each X-line being finite in axial extent and thus intrinsically three-dimensional (3D) in structure. The balance between MHD forces and flux pile-up continuously shifts as mutually tangled flux ropes merge or bounce. The spatial scale and thus the rate of reconnection are therefore intimately related to the turbulence statistics both in space and in time. We study intermittent 3D reconnection along spatially localized X-lines between two or more flux ropes. The threshold of MHD instability which in this case is the kink threshold is varied by modifying the line-tying boundary conditions. For fast inflow speed of approaching ropes, there is merging and magnetic reconnection which is a well known and expected consequence of the 2D coalescence instability. On the other hand, for slower inflow speed the flux ropes bounce. The threshold appears to be the Sweet Parker speed v{sub A}/S{sup 1/2}, where v{sub A} is the Alfven speed and S is the Lundquist number. Computations by collaborators at University of Wisconsin, Madison, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, and LANL complement the experiment.

  7. Experimental study of ion heating and acceleration during magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Hsu, S.C.

    2000-01-28

    This dissertation reports an experimental study of ion heating and acceleration during magnetic reconnection, which is the annihilation and topological rearrangement of magnetic flux in a conductive plasma. Reconnection is invoked often to explain particle heating and acceleration in both laboratory and naturally occurring plasmas. However, a simultaneous account of reconnection and its associated energy conversion has been elusive due to the extreme inaccessibility of reconnection events, e.g. in the solar corona, the Earth's magnetosphere, or in fusion research plasmas. Experiments for this work were conducted on MRX (Magnetic Reconnection Experiment), which creates a plasma environment allowing the reconnection process to be isolated, reproduced, and diagnosed in detail. Key findings of this work are the identification of local ion heating during magnetic reconnection and the determination that non-classical effects must provide the heating mechanism. Measured ion flows are sub-Alfvenic and can provide only slight viscous heating, and classical ion-electron interactions can be neglected due to the very long energy equipartition time. The plasma resistivity in the reconnection layer is seen to be enhanced over the classical value, and the ion heating is observed to scale with the enhancement factor, suggesting a relationship between the magnetic energy dissipation mechanism and the ion heating mechanism. The observation of non-classical ion heating during reconnection has significant implications for understanding the role played by non-classical dissipation mechanisms in generating fast reconnection. The findings are relevant for many areas of space and laboratory plasma research, a prime example being the currently unsolved problem of solar coronal heating. In the process of performing this work, local measurements of ion temperature and flows in a well-characterized reconnection layer were obtained for the first time in either laboratory or observational

  8. Three-Dimensional Turbulent Reconnection Induced by the Plasmoid Instability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Yi-Min; Bhattacharjee, Amitava

    2014-10-01

    It has been established that the Sweet-Parker current layer in high Lundquist number (S) reconnection is unstable to the super-Alfvenic plasmoid instability. Past two-dimensional (2D) magnetohydrodynamic simulations have demonstrated that the plasmoid instability leads to a new regime where the Sweet-Parker current layer changes into a chain of plasmoids connected by secondary current sheets, and the averaged reconnection rate becomes nearly independent of S. In a three-dimensional (3D) configuration with a guide field, the additional degree of freedom allows plasmoid instabilities to grow at oblique angles [Baalrud et al., Phys. Plasmas 19, 022101 (2012)] and develop complex dynamics of flux ropes, which may be viewed as a self-generated turbulent state. In our 3D simulations, kinematic and magnetic energy fluctuations are observed to form cigar-shaped eddies elongated along the direction of local magnetic field, which is a signature of anisotropic MHD turbulence. Additionally, the energy fluctuation spectra are found to satisfy power laws in the inertial range. The characteristics of this self-generated turbulent reconnection are compared with corresponding 2D simulations of the same configuration, as well as turbulent reconnection driven by an external forcing.

  9. On Magnetic Reconnection in a Turbulent MagnetoFluid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diamond, P. H.; Kim, E.-J.

    2000-10-01

    Recently, there has been renewed interest in the problem of magnetic reconnection in a turbulent magnetofluid^1. Most models of such a process (see (1), for example), tacitly assume that the turbulence can be given or specified ab-initio, and that reconnection will proceed in the presence of this turbulence without significantly modifying it. Here, we examine the simple Sweet-Parker problem in the presence of turbulent hydrodynamic forcing, but with magnetic fluctuations computed self-consistently via the conservation of mean-square potential (2D) or magnetic helicity (3D). This conservation law introduces important modifications to the conventionally invoked "turbulent resistivity" and "electron viscosity" (aka hyper-resistivity). In 2D, results indicate that Sweet-Parker scaling of the reconnection speed is modified only by a factor of the turbulent Alfvenic Mach number, but that the resistivity scaling remains unchanged. Work on 3D is ongoing and will be discussed. ^1 A. Lazarian and E. Vishniac, ApJ 517, 700 (1999).

  10. Multi-scale structures of turbulent magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakamura, T. K. M.; Nakamura, R.; Narita, Y.; Baumjohann, W.; Daughton, W.

    2016-05-01

    We have analyzed data from a series of 3D fully kinetic simulations of turbulent magnetic reconnection with a guide field. A new concept of the guide filed reconnection process has recently been proposed, in which the secondary tearing instability and the resulting formation of oblique, small scale flux ropes largely disturb the structure of the primary reconnection layer and lead to 3D turbulent features [W. Daughton et al., Nat. Phys. 7, 539 (2011)]. In this paper, we further investigate the multi-scale physics in this turbulent, guide field reconnection process by introducing a wave number band-pass filter (k-BPF) technique in which modes for the small scale (less than ion scale) fluctuations and the background large scale (more than ion scale) variations are separately reconstructed from the wave number domain to the spatial domain in the inverse Fourier transform process. Combining with the Fourier based analyses in the wave number domain, we successfully identify spatial and temporal development of the multi-scale structures in the turbulent reconnection process. When considering a strong guide field, the small scale tearing mode and the resulting flux ropes develop over a specific range of oblique angles mainly along the edge of the primary ion scale flux ropes and reconnection separatrix. The rapid merging of these small scale modes leads to a smooth energy spectrum connecting ion and electron scales. When the guide field is sufficiently weak, the background current sheet is strongly kinked and oblique angles for the small scale modes are widely scattered at the kinked regions. Similar approaches handling both the wave number and spatial domains will be applicable to the data from multipoint, high-resolution spacecraft observations such as the NASA magnetospheric multiscale (MMS) mission.

  11. Multi-scale structures of turbulent magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Nakamura, T. K. M. Nakamura, R.; Narita, Y.; Baumjohann, W.; Daughton, W.

    2016-05-15

    We have analyzed data from a series of 3D fully kinetic simulations of turbulent magnetic reconnection with a guide field. A new concept of the guide filed reconnection process has recently been proposed, in which the secondary tearing instability and the resulting formation of oblique, small scale flux ropes largely disturb the structure of the primary reconnection layer and lead to 3D turbulent features [W. Daughton et al., Nat. Phys. 7, 539 (2011)]. In this paper, we further investigate the multi-scale physics in this turbulent, guide field reconnection process by introducing a wave number band-pass filter (k-BPF) technique in which modes for the small scale (less than ion scale) fluctuations and the background large scale (more than ion scale) variations are separately reconstructed from the wave number domain to the spatial domain in the inverse Fourier transform process. Combining with the Fourier based analyses in the wave number domain, we successfully identify spatial and temporal development of the multi-scale structures in the turbulent reconnection process. When considering a strong guide field, the small scale tearing mode and the resulting flux ropes develop over a specific range of oblique angles mainly along the edge of the primary ion scale flux ropes and reconnection separatrix. The rapid merging of these small scale modes leads to a smooth energy spectrum connecting ion and electron scales. When the guide field is sufficiently weak, the background current sheet is strongly kinked and oblique angles for the small scale modes are widely scattered at the kinked regions. Similar approaches handling both the wave number and spatial domains will be applicable to the data from multipoint, high-resolution spacecraft observations such as the NASA magnetospheric multiscale (MMS) mission.

  12. Particle acceleration and plasma dynamics during magnetic reconnection in the magnetically dominated regime

    DOE PAGES

    Guo, Fan; Liu, Yi -Hsin; Daughton, William; ...

    2015-06-17

    Magnetic reconnection is thought to be the driver for many explosive phenomena in the universe. The energy release and particle acceleration during reconnection have been proposed as a mechanism for producing high-energy emissions and cosmic rays. We carry out two- and three-dimensional (3D) kinetic simulations to investigate relativistic magnetic reconnection and the associated particle acceleration. The simulations focus on electron–positron plasmas starting with a magnetically dominated, force-free current sheet (σ ≡ B2 / (4πnemec2) >> 1). For this limit, we demonstrate that relativistic reconnection is highly efficient at accelerating particles through a first-order Fermi process accomplished by the curvature driftmore » of particles along the electric field induced by the relativistic flows. This mechanism gives rise to the formation of hard power-law spectra f α (γ - 1)-p and approaches p = 1 for sufficiently large σ and system size. Eventually most of the available magnetic free energy is converted into nonthermal particle kinetic energy. An analytic model is presented to explain the key results and predict a general condition for the formation of power-law distributions. The development of reconnection in these regimes leads to relativistic inflow and outflow speeds and enhanced reconnection rates relative to nonrelativistic regimes. In the 3D simulation, the interplay between secondary kink and tearing instabilities leads to strong magnetic turbulence, but does not significantly change the energy conversion, reconnection rate, or particle acceleration. This paper suggests that relativistic reconnection sites are strong sources of nonthermal particles, which may have important implications for a variety of high-energy astrophysical problems.« less

  13. Particle Acceleration and Plasma Dynamics during Magnetic Reconnection in the Magnetically Dominated Regime

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Fan; Liu, Yi-Hsin; Daughton, William; Li, Hui

    2015-06-01

    Magnetic reconnection is thought to be the driver for many explosive phenomena in the universe. The energy release and particle acceleration during reconnection have been proposed as a mechanism for producing high-energy emissions and cosmic rays. We carry out two- and three-dimensional (3D) kinetic simulations to investigate relativistic magnetic reconnection and the associated particle acceleration. The simulations focus on electron-positron plasmas starting with a magnetically dominated, force-free current sheet (σ \\equiv {B}2/(4π {n}e{m}e{c}2)\\gg 1). For this limit, we demonstrate that relativistic reconnection is highly efficient at accelerating particles through a first-order Fermi process accomplished by the curvature drift of particles along the electric field induced by the relativistic flows. This mechanism gives rise to the formation of hard power-law spectra f\\propto {(γ -1)}-p and approaches p = 1 for sufficiently large σ and system size. Eventually most of the available magnetic free energy is converted into nonthermal particle kinetic energy. An analytic model is presented to explain the key results and predict a general condition for the formation of power-law distributions. The development of reconnection in these regimes leads to relativistic inflow and outflow speeds and enhanced reconnection rates relative to nonrelativistic regimes. In the 3D simulation, the interplay between secondary kink and tearing instabilities leads to strong magnetic turbulence, but does not significantly change the energy conversion, reconnection rate, or particle acceleration. This study suggests that relativistic reconnection sites are strong sources of nonthermal particles, which may have important implications for a variety of high-energy astrophysical problems.

  14. Particle acceleration and plasma dynamics during magnetic reconnection in the magnetically dominated regime

    SciTech Connect

    Guo, Fan; Liu, Yi -Hsin; Daughton, William; Li, Hui

    2015-06-17

    Magnetic reconnection is thought to be the driver for many explosive phenomena in the universe. The energy release and particle acceleration during reconnection have been proposed as a mechanism for producing high-energy emissions and cosmic rays. We carry out two- and three-dimensional (3D) kinetic simulations to investigate relativistic magnetic reconnection and the associated particle acceleration. The simulations focus on electron–positron plasmas starting with a magnetically dominated, force-free current sheet (σ ≡ B2 / (4πnemec2) >> 1). For this limit, we demonstrate that relativistic reconnection is highly efficient at accelerating particles through a first-order Fermi process accomplished by the curvature drift of particles along the electric field induced by the relativistic flows. This mechanism gives rise to the formation of hard power-law spectra f α (γ - 1)-p and approaches p = 1 for sufficiently large σ and system size. Eventually most of the available magnetic free energy is converted into nonthermal particle kinetic energy. An analytic model is presented to explain the key results and predict a general condition for the formation of power-law distributions. The development of reconnection in these regimes leads to relativistic inflow and outflow speeds and enhanced reconnection rates relative to nonrelativistic regimes. In the 3D simulation, the interplay between secondary kink and tearing instabilities leads to strong magnetic turbulence, but does not significantly change the energy conversion, reconnection rate, or particle acceleration. This paper suggests that relativistic reconnection sites are strong sources of nonthermal particles, which may have important implications for a variety of high-energy astrophysical problems.

  15. Debye scale turbulence within the electron diffusion layer during magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Jara-Almonte, J.; Ji, H.

    2014-03-15

    During collisionless, anti-parallel magnetic reconnection, the electron diffusion layer is the region of both fieldline breaking and plasma mixing. Due to the in-plane electrostatic fields associated with collisionless reconnection, the inflowing plasmas are accelerated towards the X-line and form counter-streaming beams within the unmagnetized diffusion layer. This configuration is inherently unstable to in-plane electrostatic streaming instabilities provided that there is sufficient scale separation between the Debye length λ{sub D} and the electron skin depth c/ω{sub pe}. This scale separation has hitherto not been well resolved in kinetic simulations. Using both 2D fully kinetic simulations and a simple linear model, we demonstrate that these in-plane streaming instabilities generate Debye scale turbulence within the electron diffusion layer at electron temperatures relevant to magnetic reconnection both in the magnetosphere and in laboratory experiments.

  16. Particle Acceleration Due to Coronal Non-null Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Threlfall, James; Neukirch, Thomas; Parnell, Clare Elizabeth

    2017-03-01

    Various topological features, for example magnetic null points and separators, have been inferred as likely sites of magnetic reconnection and particle acceleration in the solar atmosphere. In fact, magnetic reconnection is not constrained to solely take place at or near such topological features and may also take place in the absence of such features. Studies of particle acceleration using non-topological reconnection experiments embedded in the solar atmosphere are uncommon. We aim to investigate and characterise particle behaviour in a model of magnetic reconnection which causes an arcade of solar coronal magnetic field to twist and form an erupting flux rope, crucially in the absence of any common topological features where reconnection is often thought to occur. We use a numerical scheme that evolves the gyro-averaged orbit equations of single electrons and protons in time and space, and simulate the gyromotion of particles in a fully analytical global field model. We observe and discuss how the magnetic and electric fields of the model and the initial conditions of each orbit may lead to acceleration of protons and electrons up to 2 MeV in energy (depending on model parameters). We describe the morphology of time-dependent acceleration and impact sites for each particle species and compare our findings to those recovered by topologically based studies of three-dimensional (3D) reconnection and particle acceleration. We also broadly compare aspects of our findings to general observational features typically seen during two-ribbon flare events.

  17. Explosive reconnection and particle acceleration in relativistic plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyutikov, Maxim; Komissarov, Sergey; Porth, Oliver; Sironi, Lorenzo

    2016-10-01

    We develop a model of particle acceleration in explosive reconnection events in relativistic magnetically-dominated plasmas. We identify two stages of particle acceleration: (i) fast explosive prompt X-point collapse and (ii) ensuing island merger. The fastest acceleration occurs during the initial catastrophic X-point collapse, with the reconnection electric field of the order of the magnetic field. During the X-point collapse particles are accelerated by charge-starved electric fields, which can reach (and even exceed) values of the local magnetic field. The explosive stage of reconnection produces non-thermal power-law tails with slopes that depend on the average magnetization sigma. The model has all the ingredients needed for Crab flares: natural formation of highly magnetized regions, explosive dynamics on light travel time, development of high electric fields on macroscopic scales and acceleration of particles to energies well exceeding the average magnetic energy per particle.

  18. Proton acceleration by 3D magnetic reconnection in solar flares

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Browning, P. K.; Dalla, S.

    2007-05-01

    High energy charged particles are an important feature of solar activity such as flares, and indeed non thermal particles play a significant role in flare energy balance. Magnetic reconnection is the primary energy release mechanism in flares, and the strong DC electric fields associated with this reconnection may well be the origin of the high energy charged particles. Whilst particle acceleration has been widely studied for 2D configurations, little is known about 3D configurations. We investigate particle acceleration using a test particle approach, in the simplest 3D reconnection configuration, a 3D magnetic null point. Two modes of reconnection are possible: with a strong current filament along the "spine" field line connecting to the null, or with a sheet current at the "fan" plane of field lines emerging from the null. Using simple model fields, incorporating intiially only thee ideal reconnection region outside the current sheet (or filament), particle trajectories are investigated and the energy spectra and spatial distribution of accelerated particles are determined. We consider and compare fan and spine reconnection, and determine how the properties of the accelerated particles depend on the parameters of the reonnecting field. We also present preliminary results using more realistic, self consistent model fields.

  19. RECONNECTION-POWERED LINEAR ACCELERATOR AND GAMMA-RAY FLARES IN THE CRAB NEBULA

    SciTech Connect

    Uzdensky, Dmitri A.; Cerutti, BenoIt; Begelman, Mitchell C. E-mail: benoit.cerutti@colorado.edu

    2011-08-20

    The recent discovery of day-long gamma-ray flares in the Crab Nebula, presumed to be synchrotron emission by PeV (10{sup 15} eV) electrons in milligauss magnetic fields, presents a strong challenge to particle acceleration models. The observed photon energies exceed the upper limit ({approx}100 MeV) obtained by balancing the acceleration rate and synchrotron radiation losses under standard conditions where the electric field is smaller than the magnetic field. We argue that a linear electric accelerator, operating at magnetic reconnection sites, is able to circumvent this difficulty. Sufficiently energetic electrons have gyroradii so large that their motion is insensitive to small-scale turbulent structures in the reconnection layer and is controlled only by large-scale fields. We show that such particles are guided into the reconnection layer by the reversing magnetic field as they are accelerated by the reconnection electric field. As these electrons become confined within the current sheet, they experience a decreasing perpendicular magnetic field that may drop below the accelerating electric field. This enables them to reach higher energies before suffering radiation losses and hence to emit synchrotron radiation in excess of the 100 MeV limit, providing a natural resolution to the Crab gamma-ray flare paradox.

  20. Particle acceleration in laser-driven magnetic reconnection

    DOE PAGES

    Totorica, S. R.; Abel, T.; Fiuza, F.

    2017-04-03

    Particle acceleration induced by magnetic reconnection is thought to be a promising candidate for producing the nonthermal emissions associated with explosive phenomena such as solar flares, pulsar wind nebulae, and jets from active galactic nuclei. Laboratory experiments can play an important role in the study of the detailed microphysics of magnetic reconnection and the dominant particle acceleration mechanisms. We have used two- and three-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations to study particle acceleration in high Lundquist number reconnection regimes associated with laser-driven plasma experiments. For current experimental conditions, we show that nonthermal electrons can be accelerated to energies more than an order ofmore » magnitude larger than the initial thermal energy. The nonthermal electrons gain their energy mainly from the reconnection electric field near the X points, and particle injection into the reconnection layer and escape from the finite system establish a distribution of energies that resembles a power-law spectrum. Energetic electrons can also become trapped inside the plasmoids that form in the current layer and gain additional energy from the electric field arising from the motion of the plasmoid. We compare simulations for finite and infinite periodic systems to demonstrate the importance of particle escape on the shape of the spectrum. Based on our findings, we provide an analytical estimate of the maximum electron energy and threshold condition for observing suprathermal electron acceleration in terms of experimentally tunable parameters. We also discuss experimental signatures, including the angular distribution of the accelerated particles, and construct synthetic detector spectra. Finally, these results open the way for novel experimental studies of particle acceleration induced by reconnection.« less

  1. Particle acceleration in laser-driven magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Totorica, S. R.; Abel, T.; Fiuza, F.

    2017-04-01

    Particle acceleration induced by magnetic reconnection is thought to be a promising candidate for producing the nonthermal emissions associated with explosive phenomena such as solar flares, pulsar wind nebulae, and jets from active galactic nuclei. Laboratory experiments can play an important role in the study of the detailed microphysics of magnetic reconnection and the dominant particle acceleration mechanisms. We have used two- and three-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations to study particle acceleration in high Lundquist number reconnection regimes associated with laser-driven plasma experiments. For current experimental conditions, we show that nonthermal electrons can be accelerated to energies more than an order of magnitude larger than the initial thermal energy. The nonthermal electrons gain their energy mainly from the reconnection electric field near the X points, and particle injection into the reconnection layer and escape from the finite system establish a distribution of energies that resembles a power-law spectrum. Energetic electrons can also become trapped inside the plasmoids that form in the current layer and gain additional energy from the electric field arising from the motion of the plasmoid. We compare simulations for finite and infinite periodic systems to demonstrate the importance of particle escape on the shape of the spectrum. Based on our findings, we provide an analytical estimate of the maximum electron energy and threshold condition for observing suprathermal electron acceleration in terms of experimentally tunable parameters. We also discuss experimental signatures, including the angular distribution of the accelerated particles, and construct synthetic detector spectra. These results open the way for novel experimental studies of particle acceleration induced by reconnection.

  2. Plasma dynamics and heating/acceleration during driven magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, C. Z.; Inoue, Shizuo; Ono, Yasushi; Horiuchi, Ritoku

    2015-11-01

    Highlights of the plasma dynamics and energization during driven anti-parallel magnetic reconnection are presented. The MHD condition breaks down in the entire reconnection layer (the reconnection current layer, the separatrix region and the whole downstream), and the plasma dynamics is significantly different from the results of the Hall-MHD model. In particular, we explain (1) how electron and ion dynamics decouple and how the charge separation and electrostatic electric field are produced in the magnetic field reversal region (reconnection current layer and outflow exhaust) and around the separatrix regions, (2) how electrons and ions gain energy in the reconnection current layer, (3) why the electron outflow velocity in the reconnection exhaust reaches super-Alfvenic speed and the ion outflow velocity reaches Alfvenic speed and how the parallel electric field is produced, (4) how electrons are accelerated by the parallel electric field around the separatrix region, and (5) how ions gain energy when they move across the separatrix region into the downstream. Finally we show that electrons and ions gain energy mainly from the inductive reconnection driven electric field and less from the electrostatic electric field.

  3. Flux Rope Acceleration and Enhanced Magnetic Reconnection Rate

    SciTech Connect

    C.Z. Cheng; Y. Ren; G.S. Choe; Y.-J. Moon

    2003-03-25

    A physical mechanism of flares, in particular for the flare rise phase, has emerged from our 2-1/2-dimensional resistive MHD simulations. The dynamical evolution of current-sheet formation and magnetic reconnection and flux-rope acceleration subject to continuous, slow increase of magnetic shear in the arcade are studied by employing a non-uniform anomalous resistivity in the reconnecting current sheet under gravity. The simulation results directly relate the flux rope's accelerated rising motion with an enhanced magnetic reconnection rate and thus an enhanced reconnection electric field in the current sheet during the flare rise phase. The simulation results provide good quantitative agreements with observations of the acceleration of flux rope, which manifests in the form of SXR ejecta or erupting filament or CMEs, in the low corona. Moreover, for the X-class flare events studied in this paper the peak reconnection electric field is about O(10{sup 2} V/m) or larger, enough to accelerate p articles to over 100 keV in a field-aligned distance of 10 km. Nonthermal electrons thus generated can produce hard X-rays, consistent with impulsive HXR emission observed during the flare rise phase.

  4. CICART Center For Integrated Computation And Analysis Of Reconnection And Turbulence

    SciTech Connect

    Bhattacharjee, Amitava

    2016-03-27

    CICART is a partnership between the University of New Hampshire (UNH) and Dartmouth College. CICART addresses two important science needs of the DoE: the basic understanding of magnetic reconnection and turbulence that strongly impacts the performance of fusion plasmas, and the development of new mathematical and computational tools that enable the modeling and control of these phenomena. The principal participants of CICART constitute an interdisciplinary group, drawn from the communities of applied mathematics, astrophysics, computational physics, fluid dynamics, and fusion physics. It is a main premise of CICART that fundamental aspects of magnetic reconnection and turbulence in fusion devices, smaller-scale laboratory experiments, and space and astrophysical plasmas can be viewed from a common perspective, and that progress in understanding in any of these interconnected fields is likely to lead to progress in others. The establishment of CICART has strongly impacted the education and research mission of a new Program in Integrated Applied Mathematics in the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences at UNH by enabling the recruitment of a tenure-track faculty member, supported equally by UNH and CICART, and the establishment of an IBM-UNH Computing Alliance. The proposed areas of research in magnetic reconnection and turbulence in astrophysical, space, and laboratory plasmas include the following topics: (A) Reconnection and secondary instabilities in large high-Lundquist-number plasmas, (B) Particle acceleration in the presence of multiple magnetic islands, (C) Gyrokinetic reconnection: comparison with fluid and particle-in-cell models, (D) Imbalanced turbulence, (E) Ion heating, and (F) Turbulence in laboratory (including fusion-relevant) experiments. These theoretical studies make active use of three high-performance computer simulation codes: (1) The Magnetic Reconnection Code, based on extended two-fluid (or Hall MHD) equations, in an Adaptive Mesh

  5. Electron and Ion Acceleration Associated with Magnetotail Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Haoming

    This dissertation is dedicated to understanding electron and ion acceleration associated with magnetotail reconnection during substorms by using numerical simulations. Electron dynamics were investigated by using the UCLA global magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) model and large scale kinetic (LSK) simulations. The neutral line configurations and magnetotail flows modify the amounts of the adiabatic and non-adiabatic acceleration that electrons undergo. This causes marked differences in the temperature anisotropy for different substorms. In particular, one substorm event analyzed shows T⊥ > T∥ (T⊥ / T ∥ ≈ 2.3)at -10RE while another shows T ∥ > T⊥ (T ⊥ / T∥ ≈ 0.8), where T⊥ and T∥ (second order moments of the distribution functions) are defined with respect to the magnetic field. These differences determine the subsequent acceleration of the energetic electrons in the inner magnetosphere. Whether the acceleration is mostly parallel or perpendicular is determined by the location of dayside reconnection. A 2.5D implicit Particle-in-Cell simulation was used to study the effects produced by oxygen ions on magnetotail reconnection, and the associated acceleration of protons and oxygen ions. The inertia of oxygen ions reduces the reconnection rate and slows down the earthward propagation of dipolarization fronts (DFs). An ambipolar electric field in the oxygen diffusion region contributes to the smaller reconnection rate. This change in the reconnection rate affects the ion acceleration. In particular 67% of protons and 58% of oxygen ions were accelerated in the exhaust (between the X-point and the DF) in a simulation corresponding to a magnetic storm in which there was a 50% concentration of oxygen ions. In addition, 42% of lobe oxygen-ions are accelerated locally by the Hall electric field, far away from the X-point without entering the exhaust. Protons at the same locations experience Ex B drift. This finding extends previous knowledge that oxygen and

  6. THE ACCELERATION OF IONS IN SOLAR FLARES DURING MAGNETIC RECONNECTION

    SciTech Connect

    Knizhnik, K.; Swisdak, M.; Drake, J. F. E-mail: swisdak@umd.edu

    2011-12-20

    The acceleration of solar flare ions during magnetic reconnection is explored via particle-in-cell simulations that self-consistently and simultaneously follow the motions of both protons and {alpha} particles. We show that the dominant heating of thermal ions during guide field reconnection, the usual type in the solar corona, results from pickup behavior during the entry into reconnection exhausts. In contrast to anti-parallel reconnection, the temperature increment is dominantly transverse, rather than parallel, to the local magnetic field. A comparison of protons and {alpha} reveals a mass-to-charge (M/Q) threshold in pickup behavior that favors the heating of high-M/Q ions, which is consistent with impulsive flare observations.

  7. Prospects for Fermi Particle Acceleration at Coronal Magnetic Reconnection Sites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Provornikova, E.; Laming, J. M.; Lukin, V.

    2015-12-01

    The mechanism of first order Fermi acceleration of particles interacting with the converging magnetized flows at a reconnection site was introduced recently in an attempt to predict the energy distribution of particles resulting from violent reconnection in galactic microquasars. More careful consideration of this mechanism showed that the spectral index of accelerated particles is related to the total plasma compression within a reconnection region, similar to that in the formulation for diffusive shock acceleration. In the solar context, reconnection regions producing strong compression could be the source of suprathermal "seed particles". A hard spectrum of such suprathermal particles is believed to be necessary to initiate the particle acceleration process at low Mach number coronal mass ejection shocks close to the Sun where the gradual solar energetic particle events originate. As a first step to investigate the efficiency of Fermi acceleration, we explore the degree of plasma compression that can be achieved at reconnection sites in the solar corona. This work presents a set of 2D two-temperature resistive MHD simulations of the dynamics of several magnetic configurations within a range of lower corona plasma parameters. Energy transport processes in the MHD model include anisotropic thermal conduction for electrons and ions and radiative cooling. Magnetic configurations considered are a Harris current sheet, a force-free current sheet, a flux rope sitting above an arcade of magnetic loops, and two merging flux ropes. We demonstrate that only for some magnetic topologies, corresponding in particular to 3D magnetic nulls, the compression ratio, sufficient for first order Fermi acceleration in the reconnection region, can be achieved. These represent the potential sites in the solar corona where a hard seed particle energetic spectrum could be produced.

  8. Turbulent transport in 2D collisionless guide field reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muñoz, P. A.; Büchner, J.; Kilian, P.

    2017-02-01

    Transport in hot and dilute, i.e., collisionless, astrophysical and space, plasmas is called "anomalous." This transport is due to the interaction between the particles and the self-generated turbulence by their collective interactions. The anomalous transport has very different and not well known properties compared to the transport due to binary collisions, dominant in colder and denser plasmas. Because of its relevance for astrophysical and space plasmas, we explore the excitation of turbulence in current sheets prone to component- or guide-field reconnection, a process not well understood yet. This configuration is typical for stellar coronae, and it is created in the laboratory for which a 2.5D geometry applies. In our analysis, in addition to the immediate vicinity of the X-line, we also include regions outside and near the separatrices. We analyze the anomalous transport properties by using 2.5D Particle-in-Cell code simulations. We split off the mean slow variation (in contrast to the fast turbulent fluctuations) of the macroscopic observables and determine the main transport terms of the generalized Ohm's law. We verify our findings by comparing with the independently determined slowing-down rate of the macroscopic currents (due to a net momentum transfer from particles to waves) and with the transport terms obtained by the first order correlations of the turbulent fluctuations. We find that the turbulence is most intense in the "low density" separatrix region of guide-field reconnection. It is excited by streaming instabilities, is mainly electrostatic and "patchy" in space, and so is the associated anomalous transport. Parts of the energy exchange between turbulence and particles are reversible and quasi-periodic. The remaining irreversible anomalous resistivity can be parametrized by an effective collision rate ranging from the local ion-cyclotron to the lower-hybrid frequency. The contributions to the parallel and the perpendicular (to the magnetic

  9. Particle acceleration in laser-driven magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Totorica, Samuel; Abel, Tom; Fiuza, Frederico

    2016-10-01

    Particle acceleration induced by magnetic reconnection is a promising candidate for producing the nonthermal emissions associated with explosive astrophysical phenomena. We have used two- and three-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations to explore the possibility of studying particle acceleration from reconnection in laser-driven plasma experiments. For current experimental conditions, we show that nonthermal electrons can be accelerated to energies up to two orders of magnitude larger than the initial thermal energy. The nonthermal electrons gain energy primarily by the reconnection electric field near the X-points, and particle injection into the reconnection layer and escape from the finite system establishes a distribution of energies resembling a power-law spectrum. Energetic electrons can also become trapped inside the plasmoids that form in the current layer and gain additional energy from the electric field arising from the motion of the plasmoid. Based on our findings, we provide an analytical estimate of the maximum electron energy and threshold condition for suprathermal electron acceleration in terms of experimentally tunable parameters. Finally, we investigate future experiments with a more energetic laser drive and larger system size. We discuss the influence of plasmoids on the particle acceleration, and the use of proton radiography to probe plasmoids. This work was supported by the DOE Office of Science, Fusion Energy Science (FWP 100182).

  10. Energetic electron acceleration at reconnection jet fronts in planetary magnetotails

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Retinò, A.; Vaivads, A.; Zieger, B.; Nakamura, R.; Fujimoto, M.; Kasahara, S.; Badman, S.; Masters, A.; Coates, A.; Dougherty, M. K.

    2012-04-01

    Magnetic reconnection plays a crucial role for energetic particle acceleration in many astrophysical environments. Important examples are the solar corona and planetary magnetospheres. A number of recent numerical simulations as well as in situ observations in planetary magnetotails indicate that strong acceleration occurs at reconnection jet fronts, the boundary separating jetting from ambient plasma, and in jet braking regions, where jets eventually stop/dissipate. Yet the details of the acceleration mechanisms are not completely understood. Here we present observations of jet fronts and associated energetic electron acceleration in both Earth's and Saturn's magnetotails, by using Cluster and Cassini spacecraft data. We discuss differences/similarities in the properties of accelerated electrons and electromagnetic fields between the two cases.

  11. Reconnection, turbulence, and intermittency in coronal-hole jets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uritsky, Vadim; DeVore, Richard; Roberts, Merrill; Karpen, Judith

    2017-04-01

    Extreme-ultraviolet and X-ray jets occur in magnetically open coronal holes on the Sun, especially at high solar latitudes. We have performed a detailed statistical analysis of such a jet simulated with an adaptively refined magnetohydrodynamics model (Karpen et al., ApJ 2016). The results confirm the generation and persistence of three-dimensional, reconnection-driven magnetic turbulence in the simulation. We calculate the spatial correlations of magnetic fluctuations within the jet and find that they agree best with the Müller-Biskamp scaling model including intermittent current sheets of various sizes coupled via hydrodynamic turbulent cascade. The anisotropy of the magnetic fluctuations and the spatial orientation of the current sheets are consistent with an ensemble of nonlinear Alfvén waves generated by an untwisting magnetic field. These properties also reflect the overall collimated jet structure imposed by the geometry of the magnetic reconnection driving the jet. A comparison with Ulysses observations shows a quantitative agreement with turbulence in the fast solar wind.

  12. Gyrokinetic simulations of collisionless reconnection in turbulent non-uniform plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Kobayashi, Sumire; Rogers, Barrett N.; Numata, Ryusuke

    2014-04-15

    We present nonlinear gyrokinetic simulations of collisionless magnetic reconnection with non-uniformities in the plasma density, the electron temperature, and the ion temperature. The density gradient can stabilize reconnection due to diamagnetic effects but destabilize driftwave modes that produce turbulence. The electron temperature gradient triggers microtearing modes that drive rapid small-scale reconnection and strong electron heat transport. The ion temperature gradient destabilizes ion temperature gradient modes that, like the driftwaves, may enhance reconnection in some cases.

  13. Particle acceleration from reconnection in the geomagnetic tail

    SciTech Connect

    Birn, J.; Borovsky, J.E.; Thomsen, M.F.; McComas, D.J.; Reeves, G.D.; Belian, R.D.; Hesse, M.; Schindler, K.

    1997-08-01

    Acceleration of charged particles in the near geomagnetic tail, associated with a dynamic magnetic reconnection process, was investigated by a combined effort of data analysis, using Los Alamos data from geosynchronous orbit, MHD modeling of the dynamic evolution of the magnetotail, and test particle tracing in the electric and magnetic fields obtained from the MHD simulation.

  14. Generation of Alfvenic Waves and Turbulence in Magnetic Reconnection Jets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoshino, M.

    2014-12-01

    The magneto-hydro-dynamic (MHD) linear stability for the plasma sheet with a localized bulk plasma flow parallel to the neutral sheet is investigated. We find three different unstable modes propagating parallel to the anti-parallel magnetic field line, and we call them as "streaming tearing'', "streaming sausage'', and "streaming kink'' mode. The streaming tearing and sausage modes have the tearing mode-like structure with symmetric density fluctuation to the neutral sheet, and the streaming kink mode has the asymmetric fluctuation. The growth rate of the streaming tearing mode decreases with increasing the magnetic Reynolds number, while those of the streaming sausage and kink modes do not strongly depend on the Reynolds number. The wavelengths of these unstable modes are of the order of the thickness of plasma sheet, which behavior is almost same as the standard tearing mode with no bulk flow. Roughly speaking the growth rates of three modes become faster than the standard tearing mode. The situation of the plasma sheet with the bulk flow can be realized in the reconnection exhaust with the Alfvenic reconnection jet, and the unstable modes may be regarded as one of the generation processes of Alfvenic turbulence in the plasma sheet during magnetic reconnection.

  15. The mechanisms of electron heating and acceleration during magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Dahlin, J. T. Swisdak, M.; Drake, J. F.

    2014-09-15

    The heating of electrons in collisionless magnetic reconnection is explored in particle-in-cell simulations with non-zero guide fields so that electrons remain magnetized. In this regime, electric fields parallel to B accelerate particles directly, while those perpendicular to B do so through gradient-B and curvature drifts. The curvature drift drives parallel heating through Fermi reflection, while the gradient B drift changes the perpendicular energy through betatron acceleration. We present simulations in which we evaluate each of these mechanisms in space and time in order to quantify their role in electron heating. For a case with a small guide field (20% of the magnitude of the reconnecting component), the curvature drift is the dominant source of electron heating. However, for a larger guide field (equal to the magnitude of the reconnecting component) electron acceleration by the curvature drift is comparable to that of the parallel electric field. In both cases, the heating by the gradient B drift is negligible in magnitude. It produces net cooling because the conservation of the magnetic moment and the drop of B during reconnection produce a decrease in the perpendicular electron energy. Heating by the curvature drift dominates in the outflow exhausts where bent field lines expand to relax their tension and is therefore distributed over a large area. In contrast, the parallel electric field is localized near X-lines. This suggests that acceleration by parallel electric fields may play a smaller role in large systems where the X-line occupies a vanishing fraction of the system. The curvature drift and the parallel electric field dominate the dynamics and drive parallel heating. A consequence is that the electron energy spectrum becomes extremely anisotropic at late time, which has important implications for quantifying the limits of electron acceleration due to synchrotron emission. An upper limit on electron energy gain that is substantially higher than

  16. Sub-grid-scale description of turbulent magnetic reconnection in magnetohydrodynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Widmer, F.; Büchner, J.; Yokoi, N.

    2016-04-01

    Magnetic reconnection requires, at least locally, a non-ideal plasma response. In collisionless space and astrophysical plasmas, turbulence could transport energy from large to small scales where binary particle collisions are rare. We have investigated the influence of small scale magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) turbulence on the reconnection rate in the framework of a compressible MHD approach including sub-grid-scale (SGS) turbulence. For this sake, we considered Harris-type and force-free current sheets with finite guide magnetic fields directed out of the reconnection plane. The goal is to find out whether unresolved by conventional simulations MHD turbulence can enhance the reconnection process in high-Reynolds-number astrophysical plasmas. Together with the MHD equations, we solve evolution equations for the SGS energy and cross-helicity due to turbulence according to a Reynolds-averaged turbulence model. The SGS turbulence is self-generated and -sustained through the inhomogeneities of the mean fields. By this way, the feedback of the unresolved turbulence into the MHD reconnection process is taken into account. It is shown that the turbulence controls the regimes of reconnection by its characteristic timescale τt. The dependence on resistivity was investigated for large-Reynolds-number plasmas for Harris-type as well as force-free current sheets with guide field. We found that magnetic reconnection depends on the relation between the molecular and apparent effective turbulent resistivity. We found that the turbulence timescale τt decides whether fast reconnection takes place or whether the stored energy is just diffused away to small scale turbulence. If the amount of energy transferred from large to small scales is enhanced, fast reconnection can take place. Energy spectra allowed us to characterize the different regimes of reconnection. It was found that reconnection is even faster for larger Reynolds numbers controlled by the molecular resistivity η, as

  17. Sub-grid-scale description of turbulent magnetic reconnection in magnetohydrodynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Widmer, F.; Büchner, J.; Yokoi, N.

    2016-04-15

    Magnetic reconnection requires, at least locally, a non-ideal plasma response. In collisionless space and astrophysical plasmas, turbulence could transport energy from large to small scales where binary particle collisions are rare. We have investigated the influence of small scale magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) turbulence on the reconnection rate in the framework of a compressible MHD approach including sub-grid-scale (SGS) turbulence. For this sake, we considered Harris-type and force-free current sheets with finite guide magnetic fields directed out of the reconnection plane. The goal is to find out whether unresolved by conventional simulations MHD turbulence can enhance the reconnection process in high-Reynolds-number astrophysical plasmas. Together with the MHD equations, we solve evolution equations for the SGS energy and cross-helicity due to turbulence according to a Reynolds-averaged turbulence model. The SGS turbulence is self-generated and -sustained through the inhomogeneities of the mean fields. By this way, the feedback of the unresolved turbulence into the MHD reconnection process is taken into account. It is shown that the turbulence controls the regimes of reconnection by its characteristic timescale τ{sub t}. The dependence on resistivity was investigated for large-Reynolds-number plasmas for Harris-type as well as force-free current sheets with guide field. We found that magnetic reconnection depends on the relation between the molecular and apparent effective turbulent resistivity. We found that the turbulence timescale τ{sub t} decides whether fast reconnection takes place or whether the stored energy is just diffused away to small scale turbulence. If the amount of energy transferred from large to small scales is enhanced, fast reconnection can take place. Energy spectra allowed us to characterize the different regimes of reconnection. It was found that reconnection is even faster for larger Reynolds numbers controlled by the molecular

  18. Recent Developments in Reconnection Theory: the Plasmoid Instability, Self-Generated Turbulence, and Implications for Laboratory and Space Plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharjee, Amitava

    2015-11-01

    In recent years, new developments in reconnection theory have challenged classical nonlinear reconnection models. One of these developments is the so-called plasmoid instability of thin current sheets that grows at super-Alfvenic growth rates. Within the resistive MHD model, this instability alters qualitatively the predictions of the Sweet-Parker model, leading to a new nonlinear regime of fast reconnection in which the reconnection rate itself becomes independent of S. This regime has also been seen in Hall MHD as well as fully kinetic simulations, and thus appears to be a universal feature of thin current sheet dynamics, including applications to reconnection forced by the solar wind in the heliosphere and spontaneously unstable sawtooth oscillations in tokamaks. Plasmoids, which can grow by coalescence to large sizes, provide a powerful mechanism for coupling between global and kinetic scales as well as an efficient accelerator of particles to high energies. In two dimensions, the plasmoids are characterized by power-law distribution functions followed by exponential tails. In three dimensions, the instability produces self-generated and strongly anisotropic turbulence in which the reconnection rate for the mean-fields remain approximately at the two-dimensional value, but the energy spectra deviate significantly from anisotropic strong MHD turbulence phenomenology. A new phase diagram of fast reconnection has been proposed, guiding the design of future experiments in magnetically confined and high-energy-density plasmas, and have important implications for explorations of the reconnection layer in the recently launched Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission. This research is supported by DOE, NASA, and NSF.

  19. Particle acceleration with anomalous pitch angle scattering in 2D magnetohydrodynamic reconnection simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borissov, A.; Kontar, E. P.; Threlfall, J.; Neukirch, T.

    2017-09-01

    The conversion of magnetic energy into other forms (such as plasma heating, bulk plasma flows, and non-thermal particles) during solar flares is one of the outstanding open problems in solar physics. It is generally accepted that magnetic reconnection plays a crucial role in these conversion processes. In order to achieve the rapid energy release required in solar flares, an anomalous resistivity, which is orders of magnitude higher than the Spitzer resistivity, is often used in magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) simulations of reconnection in the corona. The origin of Spitzer resistivity is based on Coulomb scattering, which becomes negligible at the high energies achieved by accelerated particles. As a result, simulations of particle acceleration in reconnection events are often performed in the absence of any interaction between accelerated particles and any background plasma. This need not be the case for scattering associated with anomalous resistivity caused by turbulence within solar flares, as the higher resistivity implies an elevated scattering rate. We present results of test particle calculations, with and without pitch angle scattering, subject to fields derived from MHD simulations of two-dimensional (2D) X-point reconnection. Scattering rates proportional to the ratio of the anomalous resistivity to the local Spitzer resistivity, as well as at fixed values, are considered. Pitch angle scattering, which is independent of the anomalous resistivity, causes higher maximum energies in comparison to those obtained without scattering. Scattering rates which are dependent on the local anomalous resistivity tend to produce fewer highly energised particles due to weaker scattering in the separatrices, even though scattering in the current sheet may be stronger when compared to resistivity-independent scattering. Strong scattering also causes an increase in the number of particles exiting the computational box in the reconnection outflow region, as opposed to along the

  20. Non-Maxwellian electron distribution functions due to self-generated turbulence in collisionless guide-field reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muñoz, P. A.; Büchner, J.

    2016-10-01

    Non-Maxwellian electron velocity space distribution functions (EVDFs) are useful signatures of plasma conditions and non-local consequences of collisionless magnetic reconnection. In the past, EVDFs were obtained mainly for antiparallel reconnection and under the influence of weak guide-fields in the direction perpendicular to the reconnection plane. EVDFs are, however, not well known, yet, for oblique (or component-) reconnection in case and in dependence on stronger guide-magnetic fields and for the exhaust (outflow) region of reconnection away from the diffusion region. In view of the multi-spacecraft Magnetospheric Multiscale Mission (MMS), we derived the non-Maxwellian EVDFs of collisionless magnetic reconnection in dependence on the guide-field strength bg from small ( b g ≈ 0 ) to very strong (bg = 8) guide-fields, taking into account the feedback of the self-generated turbulence. For this sake, we carried out 2.5D fully kinetic Particle-in-Cell simulations using the ACRONYM code. We obtained anisotropic EVDFs and electron beams propagating along the separatrices as well as in the exhaust region of reconnection. The beams are anisotropic with a higher temperature in the direction perpendicular rather than parallel to the local magnetic field. The beams propagate in the direction opposite to the background electrons and cause instabilities. We also obtained the guide-field dependence of the relative electron-beam drift speed, threshold, and properties of the resulting streaming instabilities including the strongly non-linear saturation of the self-generated plasma turbulence. This turbulence and its non-linear feedback cause non-adiabatic parallel electron acceleration. We further obtained the resulting EVDFs due to the non-linear feedback of the saturated self-generated turbulence near the separatrices and in the exhaust region of reconnection in dependence on the guide field strength. We found that the influence of the self-generated plasma turbulence

  1. Magnetic reconnection in the presence of externally driven and self-generated turbulence

    SciTech Connect

    Karimabadi, H.; Lazarian, A.

    2013-11-15

    Magnetic reconnection is an important process that violates flux freezing and induces change of magnetic field topology in conducting fluids and, as a consequence, converts magnetic field energy into particle energy. It is thought to be operative in laboratory, heliophysical, and astrophysical plasmas. These environments exhibit wide variations in collisionality, ranging from collisionless in the Earth's magnetosphere to highly collisional in molecular clouds. A common feature among these plasmas is, however, the presence of turbulence. We review the present understanding of the effects of turbulence on the reconnection rate, discussing both how strong pre-existing turbulence modifies Sweet-Parker reconnection and how turbulence may develop as a result of reconnection itself. In steady state, reconnection rate is proportional to the aspect ratio of the diffusion region. Thus, two general MHD classes of models for fast reconnection have been proposed, differing on whether they keep the aspect ratio finite by increasing the width due to turbulent broadening or shortening the length of the diffusion layer due to plasmoid instability. One of the consequences of the plasmoid instability model is the possibility that the current sheet thins down to collisionless scales where kinetic effects become dominant. As a result, kinetic effects may be of importance for many astrophysical applications which were considered to be in the realm of MHD. Whether pre-existing turbulence can significantly modify the transition to the kinetic regime is not currently known. Although most studies of turbulent reconnection have been based on MHD, recent advances in kinetic simulations are enabling 3D studies of turbulence and reconnection in the collisionless regime. A summary of these recent works, highlighting similarities and differences with the MHD models of turbulent reconnection, as well as comparison with in situ observations in the magnetosphere and in the solar wind, are presented

  2. Magnetic reconnection in the presence of externally driven and self-generated turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karimabadi, H.; Lazarian, A.

    2013-11-01

    Magnetic reconnection is an important process that violates flux freezing and induces change of magnetic field topology in conducting fluids and, as a consequence, converts magnetic field energy into particle energy. It is thought to be operative in laboratory, heliophysical, and astrophysical plasmas. These environments exhibit wide variations in collisionality, ranging from collisionless in the Earth's magnetosphere to highly collisional in molecular clouds. A common feature among these plasmas is, however, the presence of turbulence. We review the present understanding of the effects of turbulence on the reconnection rate, discussing both how strong pre-existing turbulence modifies Sweet-Parker reconnection and how turbulence may develop as a result of reconnection itself. In steady state, reconnection rate is proportional to the aspect ratio of the diffusion region. Thus, two general MHD classes of models for fast reconnection have been proposed, differing on whether they keep the aspect ratio finite by increasing the width due to turbulent broadening or shortening the length of the diffusion layer due to plasmoid instability. One of the consequences of the plasmoid instability model is the possibility that the current sheet thins down to collisionless scales where kinetic effects become dominant. As a result, kinetic effects may be of importance for many astrophysical applications which were considered to be in the realm of MHD. Whether pre-existing turbulence can significantly modify the transition to the kinetic regime is not currently known. Although most studies of turbulent reconnection have been based on MHD, recent advances in kinetic simulations are enabling 3D studies of turbulence and reconnection in the collisionless regime. A summary of these recent works, highlighting similarities and differences with the MHD models of turbulent reconnection, as well as comparison with in situ observations in the magnetosphere and in the solar wind, are presented

  3. Particle acceleration during magnetic reconnection in a low-beta pair plasma

    DOE PAGES

    Guo, Fan; Li, Hui; Daughton, William; ...

    2016-04-29

    Plasma energization through magnetic reconnection in the magnetically dominated regime featured by low plasma beta (β=8πnkT0/B2 <<1) and/or high magnetization (σ=B2/(4πnmc2)>>1) is important in a series of astrophysical systems such as solar flares, pulsar wind nebula, and relativistic jets from black holes. In this paper, we review the recent progress on kinetic simulations of this process and further discuss plasma dynamics and particle acceleration in a low-β reconnection layer that consists of electron–positron pairs. We also examine the effect of different initial thermal temperatures on the resulting particle energy spectra. While earlier papers have concluded that the spectral index ismore » smaller for higher σ, our simulations show that the spectral index approaches p = 1 for sufficiently low plasma β, even if σ~1. Since this predicted spectral index in the idealized limit is harder than most observations, it is important to consider effects that can lead to a softer spectrum such as open boundary simulations. Here, we also remark that the effects of three-dimensional reconnection physics and turbulence on reconnection need to be addressed in the future.« less

  4. Particle acceleration during magnetic reconnection in a low-beta pair plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Guo, Fan; Li, Hui; Daughton, William; Li, Xiaocan; Liu, Yi -Hsin

    2016-04-29

    Plasma energization through magnetic reconnection in the magnetically dominated regime featured by low plasma beta (β=8πnkT0/B2 <<1) and/or high magnetization (σ=B2/(4πnmc2)>>1) is important in a series of astrophysical systems such as solar flares, pulsar wind nebula, and relativistic jets from black holes. In this paper, we review the recent progress on kinetic simulations of this process and further discuss plasma dynamics and particle acceleration in a low-β reconnection layer that consists of electron–positron pairs. We also examine the effect of different initial thermal temperatures on the resulting particle energy spectra. While earlier papers have concluded that the spectral index is smaller for higher σ, our simulations show that the spectral index approaches p = 1 for sufficiently low plasma β, even if σ~1. Since this predicted spectral index in the idealized limit is harder than most observations, it is important to consider effects that can lead to a softer spectrum such as open boundary simulations. Here, we also remark that the effects of three-dimensional reconnection physics and turbulence on reconnection need to be addressed in the future.

  5. Particle acceleration during magnetic reconnection in a low-beta pair plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Guo, Fan; Li, Hui; Daughton, William; Li, Xiaocan; Liu, Yi -Hsin

    2016-04-29

    Plasma energization through magnetic reconnection in the magnetically dominated regime featured by low plasma beta (β=8πnkT0/B2 <<1) and/or high magnetization (σ=B2/(4πnmc2)>>1) is important in a series of astrophysical systems such as solar flares, pulsar wind nebula, and relativistic jets from black holes. In this paper, we review the recent progress on kinetic simulations of this process and further discuss plasma dynamics and particle acceleration in a low-β reconnection layer that consists of electron–positron pairs. We also examine the effect of different initial thermal temperatures on the resulting particle energy spectra. While earlier papers have concluded that the spectral index is smaller for higher σ, our simulations show that the spectral index approaches p = 1 for sufficiently low plasma β, even if σ~1. Since this predicted spectral index in the idealized limit is harder than most observations, it is important to consider effects that can lead to a softer spectrum such as open boundary simulations. Here, we also remark that the effects of three-dimensional reconnection physics and turbulence on reconnection need to be addressed in the future.

  6. Particle acceleration in MHD turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beresnyak, Andrey

    2017-05-01

    MHD Turbulence describes dynamics of astrophysical plasmas on large scale. It is characterized by energy transfer between different scales and the exchange of energy with nonthermal population - typically cosmic rays. Recent progress in theory regarding almost all basic regimes of turbulence - from the dynamo to the decaying case and the asymptotic scaling laws, allowed us to proceed with more observationally motivated questions. One of them is why almost all strongly magnetized environments are indeed observable, e.g. why such environments are infused with high-energy particles, their distributions stretching to energies orders of magnitude higher than thermal. It turns out that there are generic mechanisms of acceleration in turbulence, both second and first order in v/c, the latter was somehow unnoticed. These generic mechanisms may explain the ubiquity of non-thermal tails in various magnetized astrophysical environments, e.g. solar chromosphere, pulsar magnetospheres, jets from supermassive black holes, gamma-ray bursts, etc.

  7. VLA Observations of Solar Decimetric Spike Bursts: Direct Signature of Accelerated Electrons in Reconnection Outflow Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, B.; Bastian, T.; Gary, D. E.

    2014-12-01

    Solar decimetric spike bursts, which appear in a radio dynamic spectrum as a cluster of short-lived and narrowband brightenings, have been suggested as a possible signature of many, "elementary" particle accelerations at or near a magnetic reconnection site. Their dynamic spectral feature can be potentially used to diagnose important parameters of the reconnection site such as plasma density and spatial size of the fragmentation. Yet direct observational evidence supporting this scenario has been elusive mainly due to the lack of imaging observations. The upgraded Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA) provides the first opportunity of performing simultaneous radio imaging and dynamic spectroscopy, which allows radio sources to be imaged at every spatio-temporal pixel in the dynamic spectrum. Here we report Jansky VLA observations of decimetric spike bursts recorded during an eruptive solar limb flare. Combined with EUV and X-ray data from SDO and RHESSI, we show that the spike bursts coincide spatially with a loop-top hard X-ray source, which are located in a region where supra-arcade downflows meet the underlying hot, EUV/X-ray loops. We interpret the observed spike bursts as a direct signature of non-thermal electrons accelerated by turbulences and/or shocks in the reconnection outflow region.

  8. Experimental Study of Lower-hybrid Drift Turbulence in a Reconnecting Current Sheet

    SciTech Connect

    Carter, T. A.; Yamada, M.; Ji, H.; Kulsrud, R. M.; Trintchouck, F.

    2002-06-18

    The role of turbulence in the process of magnetic reconnection has been the subject of a great deal of study and debate in the theoretical literature. At issue in this debate is whether turbulence is essential for fast magnetic reconnection to occur in collisionless current sheets. Some theories claim it is necessary in order to provide anomalous resistivity, while others present a laminar fast reconnection mechanism based on the Hall term in the generalized Ohm's law. In this work, a thorough study of electrostatic potential fluctuations in the current sheet of the Magnetic Reconnection Experiment (MRX) [M. Yamada et al., Phys. Plasmas 4, 1936 (1997)] was performed in order to ascertain the importance of turbulence in a laboratory reconnection experiment. Using amplified floating Langmuir probes, broadband fluctuations in the lower hybrid frequency range (fLH approximately 5-15 MHz) were measured which arise with the formation of the current sheet in MRX. The frequency spectrum, spatial amplitude profile, and spatial correlation characteristics of the measured turbulence were examined carefully, finding consistency with theories of the lower-hybrid drift instability (LHDI). The LHDI and its role in magnetic reconnection has been studied theoretically for decades, but this work represents the first detection and detailed study of the LHDI in a laboratory current sheet. The observation of the LHDI in MRX has provided the unique opportunity to uncover the role of this instability in collisionless reconnection. It was found that: (1) the LHDI fluctuations are confined to the low-beta edge of current sheets in MRX; (2) the LHDI amplitude does not correlate well in time or space with the reconnection electric field, which is directly related to the rate of reconnection; and (3) significant LHDI amplitude persists in high collisionality current sheets where the reconnection rate is classical. These findings suggest that the measured LHDI fluctuations do not play an

  9. Inertial-Range Reconnection in Magnetohydrodynamic Turbulence and in the Solar Wind.

    PubMed

    Lalescu, Cristian C; Shi, Yi-Kang; Eyink, Gregory L; Drivas, Theodore D; Vishniac, Ethan T; Lazarian, Alexander

    2015-07-10

    In situ spacecraft data on the solar wind show events identified as magnetic reconnection with wide outflows and extended "X lines," 10(3)-10(4) times ion scales. To understand the role of turbulence at these scales, we make a case study of an inertial-range reconnection event in a magnetohydrodynamic simulation. We observe stochastic wandering of field lines in space, breakdown of standard magnetic flux freezing due to Richardson dispersion, and a broadened reconnection zone containing many current sheets. The coarse-grain magnetic geometry is like large-scale reconnection in the solar wind, however, with a hyperbolic flux tube or apparent X line extending over integral length scales.

  10. Reconnection AND Bursty Bulk Flow Associated Turbulence IN THE Earth'S Plasma Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voros, Z.; Nakamura, R.; Baumjohann, W.; Runov, A.; Volwerk, M.; Jankovicova, D.; Balogh, A.; Klecker, B.

    2006-12-01

    Reconnection related fast flows in the Earth's plasma sheet can be associated with several accompanying phenomena, such as magnetic field dipolarization, current sheet thinning and turbulence. Statistical analysis of multi-scale properties of turbulence facilitates to understand the interaction of the plasma flow with the dipolar magnetic field and to recognize the remote or nearby temporal and spatial characteristics of reconnection. The main emphasis of this presentation is on differentiating between the specific statistical features of flow associated fluctuations at different distances from the reconnection site.

  11. Genesis of Interplanetary Intermittent Turbulence: A Case Study of Rope&enrope Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chian, Abraham C.-L.; Feng, Heng Q.; Hu, Qiang; Loew, Murray H.; Miranda, Rodrigo A.; Muñoz, Pablo R.; Sibeck, David G.; Wu, De J.

    2016-12-01

    In a recent paper, the relation between current sheet, magnetic reconnection, and turbulence at the leading edge of an interplanetary coronal mass ejection was studied. We report here the observation of magnetic reconnection at the interface region of two interplanetary magnetic flux ropes. The front and rear boundary layers of three interplanetary magnetic flux ropes are identified, and the structures of magnetic flux ropes are reconstructed by the Grad-Shafranov method. A quantitative analysis of the reconnection condition and the degree of intermittency reveals that rope-rope magnetic reconnection is the most likely site for genesis of interplanetary intermittency turbulence in this event. The dynamic pressure pulse resulting from this reconnection triggers the onset of a geomagnetic storm.

  12. How to identify reconnecting current sheets in incompressible Hall MHD turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Donato, S.; Greco, A.; Matthaeus, W. H.; Servidio, S.; Dmitruk, P.

    2013-07-01

    Using high Reynolds number simulations of two-dimensional Hall magnetohydrodynamics (HMHD) turbulence, a statistical association between magnetic discontinuities and magnetic reconnection is demonstrated. We find that sets of discontinuities, identified using the normalized partial variance of vector increments (PVI method), strongly depend on threshold in PVI statistic that is used as an identifying condition and on the strength of the Hall term. The analysis confirms that the Hall term plays an important role in turbulence and it affects the methods employed for detection of reconnecting current sheets. In particular, we found the following: (1) Among all the discontinuities detected by the PVI method, the reconnecting ones are on average thinner. (2) A reduction in size of all discontinuities and of reconnecting current sheets is observed as the threshold θ grows. (3) The average width of the reconnecting current sheets decreases as the strength of the Hall term grows and the ion inertial scale di increases with respect to the dissipative scale.

  13. Genesis of Interplanetary Intermittent Turbulence: a Case Study of Rope-Rope Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chian, Abraham C.- L.; Feng, Heng Q.; Hu, Qiang; Loew, Murray H.; Miranda, Rodrigo A.; Munoz, Pablo R.; Sibeck, David G.; Wu, De J.

    2016-01-01

    In a recent paper, the relation between current sheet, magnetic reconnection, and turbulence at the leading edge of an interplanetary coronal mass ejection was studied. We report here the observation of magnetic reconnection at the interface region of two interplanetary magnetic flux ropes. The front and rear boundary layers of three interplanetary magnetic flux ropes are identified, and the structures of magnetic flux ropes are reconstructed by the Grad Shafranov method. A quantitative analysis of the reconnection condition and the degree of intermittency reveals that rope-rope magnetic reconnection is the most likely site for genesis of interplanetary intermittency turbulence in this event. The dynamic pressure pulse resulting from this reconnection triggers the onset of a geomagnetic storm.

  14. Electron Scale Structures and Magnetic Reconnection Signatures in the Turbulent Magnetosheath

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yordanova, E.; Voros, Z.; Varsani, A.; Graham, D. B.; Norgren, C.; Khotyaintsev, Yu. V.; Vaivads, A.; Eriksson, E.; Nakamura, R.; Lindqvist, P.-A.; hide

    2016-01-01

    Collisionless space plasma turbulence can generate reconnecting thin current sheets as suggested by recent results of numerical magnetohydrodynamic simulations. The Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission provides the first serious opportunity to verify whether small ion-electron-scale reconnection, generated by turbulence, resembles the reconnection events frequently observed in the magnetotail or at the magnetopause. Here we investigate field and particle observations obtained by the MMS fleet in the turbulent terrestrial magnetosheath behind quasi-parallel bow shock geometry. We observe multiple small-scale current sheets during the event and present a detailed look of one of the detected structures. The emergence of thin current sheets can lead to electron scale structures. Within these structures, we see signatures of ion demagnetization, electron jets, electron heating, and agyrotropy suggesting that MMS spacecraft observe reconnection at these scales.

  15. MAGNETIC RECONNECTION TURBULENCE IN STRONG GUIDE FIELDS: BASIC PROPERTIES AND APPLICATION TO CORONAL HEATING

    SciTech Connect

    Pueschel, M. J.; Terry, P. W.; Zweibel, E. G.; Zhdankin, V.; Told, D.; Jenko, F.; Lesch, H.

    2014-08-01

    A current sheet susceptible to the tearing instability is used to drive reconnection turbulence in the presence of a strong guide field. Through nonlinear gyrokinetic simulations, the dependencies of central quantities such as the heating rate on parameters like collisionality or plasma β are studied, revealing that linear physics tends to predict only some aspects of the quasi-saturated state, with the nonlinear cascade responsible for additional features. For the solar corona, it is demonstrated that the kinetic heating associated with this type of turbulence agrees quantitatively with observational volumetric heating rates. In the context of short particle acceleration events, the self-consistent emergence of plasmoids or flux ropes in the turbulent bath is found to be important: ubiquitously occurring merger events of these objects cause strong bursts in the heating rate, the timescale of which is consistent with nanoflare observations. Furthermore, anisotropy of the temperature fluctuations is seen to emerge, hinting at a new means of generating coronal ion temperature anisotropy in the absence of cyclotron resonances.

  16. Reversible collisionless magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Ishizawa, A.; Watanabe, T.-H.

    2013-10-15

    Reversible magnetic reconnection is demonstrated for the first time by means of gyrokinetic numerical simulations of a collisionless magnetized plasma. Growth of a current-driven instability in a sheared magnetic field is accompanied by magnetic reconnection due to electron inertia effects. Following the instability growth, the collisionless reconnection is accelerated with development of a cross-shaped structure of current density, and then all field lines are reconnected. The fully reconnected state is followed by the secondary reconnection resulting in a weakly turbulent state. A time-reversed simulation starting from the turbulent state manifests that the collisionless reconnection process proceeds inversely leading to the initial state. During the reversed reconnection, the kinetic energy is reconverted into the original magnetic field energy. In order to understand the stability of reversed process, an external perturbation is added to the fully reconnected state, and it is found that the accelerated reconnection is reversible when the deviation of the E × B streamlines due to the perturbation is comparable with or smaller than a current layer width.

  17. Superthermal Ion Transport and Acceleration in Multiple Contracting and Reconnecting Inertial-scale Flux Ropes in the Solar Wind

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le Roux, Jakobus; Zank, Gary; Webb, Gary

    2014-10-01

    MHD turbulence simulations with a strong large-scale magnetic field show that the turbulence is filled with quasi-2D inertial-scale flux ropes that intermittently reconnect. Solar wind observations indicate that the statistical properties of the turbulence agree well with the MHD turbulence simulations, while particle simulations stress how ions can be efficiently accelerated to produce power law spectra when traversing multiple flux ropes. Recent observations show the presence of different size inertial-scale magnetic islands in the slow solar wind near the heliospheric current sheet, evidence of island merging, and of heating of ions and electrons in the vicinity. We will present a new statistical transport theory designed to model the acceleration and transport of superthermal ions traversing multiple contracting and reconnecting inertial-scale quasi-2D flux ropes in the supersonic slow solar wind. A steady-state solution for the accelerated particle spectrum in a radially expanding solar wind will discussed, showing that the theory potentially can explain naturally the existence of superthermal power-law spectra observed during quiet solar wind conditions.

  18. Suprathermal Ion Acceleration in Multiple Contracting and Reconnecting Inertial-scale Flux Ropes in the Supersonic Solar Wind.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    le Roux, J. A.; Zank, G. P.; Webb, G. M.

    2014-12-01

    3D and 2D MHD turbulence simulations with a strong large-scale magnetic field show that the turbulence is filled with quasi-2D inertial-scale flux ropes that intermittently reconnect, while test particle simulations stress how suprathermal particles can be efficiently accelerated to produce power law spectra (kappa distributions) when traversing multiple flux ropes. Solar wind observations indicate that the statistical properties of the turbulence agree well with the MHD turbulence simulation. In addition, recent observations show the presence of different size inertial-scale magnetic islands in the slow solar wind near the heliospheric current sheet, evidence of island merging, and of heating of ions and electrons in their vicinity. At the same time, observations in the supersonic solar wind suggest the existence of suprathermal ion spectra in the solar wind frame where the distribution function is a power law in momentum with a -5 exponent. We present a new statistical transport theory to model the acceleration of superthermal ions traversing multiple contracting and reconnecting inertial-scale quasi-2D flux ropes in the supersonic solar wind. Steady-state analytical solutions for the accelerated suprathermal particle spectrum in a radially expanding solar wind will be explored to show under what conditions one can reproduce the observed superthermal power-law slope.

  19. Drift waves, intense parallel electric fields, and turbulence associated with asymmetric magnetic reconnection at the magnetopause

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ergun, R. E.; Chen, L.-J.; Wilder, F. D.; Ahmadi, N.; Eriksson, S.; Usanova, M. E.; Goodrich, K. A.; Holmes, J. C.; Sturner, A. P.; Malaspina, D. M.; Newman, D. L.; Torbert, R. B.; Argall, M. R.; Lindqvist, P.-A.; Burch, J. L.; Webster, J. M.; Drake, J. F.; Price, L.; Cassak, P. A.; Swisdak, M.; Shay, M. A.; Graham, D. B.; Strangeway, R. J.; Russell, C. T.; Giles, B. L.; Dorelli, J. C.; Gershman, D.; Avanov, L.; Hesse, M.; Lavraud, B.; Le Contel, O.; Retino, A.; Phan, T. D.; Goldman, M. V.; Stawarz, J. E.; Schwartz, S. J.; Eastwood, J. P.; Hwang, K.-J.; Nakamura, R.; Wang, S.

    2017-04-01

    Observations of magnetic reconnection at Earth's magnetopause often display asymmetric structures that are accompanied by strong magnetic field (B) fluctuations and large-amplitude parallel electric fields (E||). The B turbulence is most intense at frequencies above the ion cyclotron frequency and below the lower hybrid frequency. The B fluctuations are consistent with a thin, oscillating current sheet that is corrugated along the electron flow direction (along the X line), which is a type of electromagnetic drift wave. Near the X line, electron flow is primarily due to a Hall electric field, which diverts ion flow in asymmetric reconnection and accompanies the instability. Importantly, the drift waves appear to drive strong parallel currents which, in turn, generate large-amplitude ( 100 mV/m) E|| in the form of nonlinear waves and structures. These observations suggest that turbulence may be common in asymmetric reconnection, penetrate into the electron diffusion region, and possibly influence the magnetic reconnection process.

  20. Reconnection Diffusion in Turbulent Fluids and Its Implications for Star Formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lazarian, A.

    2014-05-01

    Astrophysical fluids are turbulent a fact which changes the dynamics of many key processes, including magnetic reconnection. Fast reconnection of magnetic field in turbulent fluids allows the field to change its topology and connections. As a result, the traditional concept of magnetic fields being frozen into the plasma is no longer applicable. Plasma associated with a given magnetic field line at one instant is distributed along a different set of magnetic field lines at the next instant. This diffusion of plasmas and magnetic field is enabled by reconnection and therefore is termed "reconnection diffusion". The astrophysical implications of this concept include heat transfer in plasmas, advection of heavy elements in interstellar medium, magnetic field generation etc. However, the most dramatic implications of the concept are related to the star formation process. The reason is that magnetic fields are dynamically important for most of the stages of star formation. The existing theory of star formation has been developed ignoring the possibility of reconnection diffusion. Instead, it appeals to the decoupling of mass and magnetic field arising from neutrals drifting in respect to ions entrained on magnetic field lines, i.e. through the process that is termed "ambipolar diffusion". The predictions of ambipolar diffusion and reconnection diffusion are very different. For instance, if the ionization of media is high, ambipolar diffusion predicts that the coupling of mass and magnetic field is nearly perfect. At the same time, reconnection diffusion is independent of the ionization but depends on the scale of the turbulent eddies and on the turbulent velocities. In the paper we explain the physics of reconnection diffusion both from macroscopic and microscopic points of view, i.e. appealing to the reconnection of flux tubes and to the diffusion of magnetic field lines. We make use of the Lazarian and Vishniac (Astrophys. J. 517:700, 1999) theory of magnetic

  1. Acceleration of particles in imbalanced magnetohydrodynamic turbulence.

    PubMed

    Teaca, Bogdan; Weidl, Martin S; Jenko, Frank; Schlickeiser, Reinhard

    2014-08-01

    The present work investigates the acceleration of test particles, relevant to the solar-wind problem, in balanced and imbalanced magnetohydrodynamic turbulence (terms referring here to turbulent states possessing zero and nonzero cross helicity, respectively). These turbulent states, obtained numerically by prescribing the injection rates for the ideal invariants, are evolved dynamically with the particles. While the energy spectrum for balanced and imbalanced states is known, the impact made on particle heating is a matter of debate, with different considerations giving different results. By performing direct numerical simulations, resonant and nonresonant particle accelerations are automatically considered and the correct turbulent phases are taken into account. For imbalanced turbulence, it is found that the acceleration rate of charged particles is reduced and the heating rate diminished. This behavior is independent of the particle gyroradius, although particles that have a stronger adiabatic motion (smaller gyroradius) tend to experience a larger heating.

  2. Acceleration of particles in imbalanced magnetohydrodynamic turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teaca, Bogdan; Weidl, Martin S.; Jenko, Frank; Schlickeiser, Reinhard

    2014-08-01

    The present work investigates the acceleration of test particles, relevant to the solar-wind problem, in balanced and imbalanced magnetohydrodynamic turbulence (terms referring here to turbulent states possessing zero and nonzero cross helicity, respectively). These turbulent states, obtained numerically by prescribing the injection rates for the ideal invariants, are evolved dynamically with the particles. While the energy spectrum for balanced and imbalanced states is known, the impact made on particle heating is a matter of debate, with different considerations giving different results. By performing direct numerical simulations, resonant and nonresonant particle accelerations are automatically considered and the correct turbulent phases are taken into account. For imbalanced turbulence, it is found that the acceleration rate of charged particles is reduced and the heating rate diminished. This behavior is independent of the particle gyroradius, although particles that have a stronger adiabatic motion (smaller gyroradius) tend to experience a larger heating.

  3. Multifractal dissipation of intermittent turbulence generated by the magnetic reconnection in the solar wind

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Y.; Wei, F.; Feng, X.

    2013-12-01

    Recent observations revealed a scale-invariant dissipation process in the fast ambient solar wind, while numerical simulations indicated that the dissipation process in collisionless reconnection was multifractal. Here, we investigate the properties of turbulent fluctuations in the magnetic reconnection prevailed region. It is found that there are large magnetic field shear angle and obvious intermittent structures in these regions. The deduced scaling exponents in the dissipation subrange show a multifractal scaling. In comparison, in the nearby region where magnetic reconnection is less prevailed, we find smaller magnetic field shear angle, less intermittent structures, and most importantly, a monofractal dissipation process. These results provide additionally observational evidence for previous observation and simulation work, and they also imply that magnetic dissipation in the solar wind magnetic reconnection might be caused by the intermittent cascade as multifractal processes.

  4. Impulsive Reconnection: 3D Onset and Stagnation in Turbulent Paradigms (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sears, J.; Intrator, T.; Weber, T.; Sun, X.; Lapenta, G.; Lazarian, A.

    2010-12-01

    Reconnection processes are ubiquitous in solar coronal loops, the earth's magnetotail, galactic jets, and laboratory configurations such as spheromaks and Z pinches. It is believed that reconnection dynamics are often closely linked to turbulence. In these phenomena, the bursty onset of reconnection is partly determined by a balance of macroscopic MHD forces. In a turbulent paradigm, it is reasonable to suppose that there exist many individual reconnection sites, each X-line being finite in axial extent and thus intrinsically three-dimensional (3D) in structure. The balance between MHD forces and flux pile-up continuously shifts as mutually tangled flux ropes merge or bounce. The spatial scale and thus the rate of reconnection are therefore intimately related to the turbulence statistics both in space and in time. We study intermittent 3D reconnection along spatially localized X-lines between two or more flux ropes. The threshold of MHD instability which in this case is the kink threshold is varied by modifying the line-tying boundary conditions. For fast inflow speed of approaching ropes, there is merging and magnetic reconnection which is a well known and expected consequence of the 2D coalescence instability. On the other hand, for slower inflow speed the flux ropes bounce. The threshold appears to be the Sweet Parker speed vA/S1/2, where vA is the Alfvén speed and S is the Lundquist number. Computations by collaborators at University of Wisconsin, Madison, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, and Los Alamos National Laboratory complement the experiment.

  5. Examination of Bursty Electromagnetic Waves Observed During Intervals of Turbulent Magnetosheath Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Adrian, Mark L.; Wendel, D. E.

    2011-01-01

    We investigate observations of intense bursts of electromagnetic waves in association with magnetic reconnection in the turbulent magnetosheath. These structured, broadband bursts occur above 80-Hz, often displaying features reminiscent of absorption bands and are observed at local minima in the magnetic field. We present detailed analyses of these intense bursts of electromagnetic waves and quantify their proximity to X- and O-nulls.

  6. Particle Acceleration and Transport in 3D Reconnection: Implications for the Heliosheath

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dahlin, J.; Drake, J. F.; Swisdak, M. M.

    2012-12-01

    We present results from 3D kinetic simulations of magnetic reconnection aimed at addressing the problem of particle transport and acceleration in the heliosheath. It has recently been suggested that sectored field in the heliosheath reconnects, generating magnetic islands which would accelerate and trap energetic particles. A kinetic treatment is necessary to capture vital aspects of this system, as feedback from particle heating significantly impacts the reconnection dynamics. Our 3D approach is also capable of producing the complex island structures and stochastic fields which are not captured in 2D. In our new simulations, we find that particles may be trapped inside 3D magnetic islands for a significant amount of time. We calculate diffusion coefficients over the full range of particle rigidity and find that transport in the transverse heliographic direction is greatly suppressed. We also examine particle acceleration during 3D reconnection, presenting energy spectra and evaluating the relative importance of different acceleration mechanisms.

  7. The wall of reconnection-driven magnetohydrodynamic turbulence in a large solar flare

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moore, R. L.; Larosa, T. N.; Orwig, L. E.

    1995-01-01

    LaRosa and Moore (1993) recently proposed that the bulk dissipation of magnetic field that is required for the electron energization in the explosive phase of solar flares occurs in a 'fat current sheet', a wall of cascading magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) turbulence sustained by highly disordered driven reconnection of opposing magnetic fields impacting at a turbulent boundary layer. Here, we use the well-observed great two-ribbon eruptive flare of 1984 April 24/25 to assess the feasibility of both (1) the standard model for the overall three-dimensional form and action of the magnetic field and (2) the turbulent reconnection wall within it. We find (1) that the morphology of this flare closely matched that of the standard model; (2) the preflare sheared core field had enough nonpotential magnetic energy to power the flare; (3) the model turbulent wall required to achieve the flare's peak dissipative power easily fit within the overall span of the flaring magnetic field; (4) this wall was thick enough to have turbulent eddies large enough (diameters approximately 10(exp 8 cm) to produce the approximately ergs energy release fragments typically observed in the explosive phase of flares; (5) the aspect ratio (thickness/vertical extent) of the turbulent reconnection wall was in the 0.1-1 range expected by (Parker 1973). We therefore conclude that the viability of our version of the standard model (i.e., having the magnetic field dissipation occur in our turbulent reconnection wall) is well confirmed by this typical great two-ribbon eruptive flare.

  8. Comparison of test particle acceleration in torsional spine and fan reconnection regimes

    SciTech Connect

    Hosseinpour, M. Mehdizade, M.; Mohammadi, M. A.

    2014-10-15

    Magnetic reconnection is a common phenomenon taking place in astrophysical and space plasmas, especially in solar flares which are rich sources of highly energetic particles. Torsional spine and fan reconnections are important mechanisms proposed for steady-state three-dimensional null-point reconnection. By using the magnetic and electric fields for these regimes, we numerically investigate the features of test particle acceleration in both regimes with input parameters for the solar corona. By comparison, torsional spine reconnection is found to be more efficient than torsional fan reconnection in an acceleration of a proton to a high kinetic energy. A proton can gain as high as 100 MeV of relativistic kinetic energy within only a few milliseconds. Moreover, in torsional spine reconnection, an accelerated particle can escape either along the spine axis or on the fan plane depending on its injection position. However, in torsional fan reconnection, the particle is only allowed to accelerate along the spine axis. In addition, in both regimes, the particle's trajectory and final kinetic energy depend on the injection position but adopting either spatially uniform or non-uniform localized plasma resistivity does not much influence the features of trajectory.

  9. Nonthermally dominated electron acceleration during magnetic reconnection in a low-β plasma

    DOE PAGES

    Li, Xiaocan; Guo, Fan; Li, Hui; ...

    2015-09-24

    By means of fully kinetic simulations, we investigate electron acceleration during magnetic reconnection in a nonrelativistic proton–electron plasma with conditions similar to solar corona and flares. We demonstrate that reconnection leads to a nonthermally dominated electron acceleration with a power-law energy distribution in the nonrelativistic low-β regime but not in the high-β regime, where β is the ratio of the plasma thermal pressure and the magnetic pressure. The accelerated electrons contain most of the dissipated magnetic energy in the low-β regime. A guiding-center current description is used to reveal the role of electron drift motions during the bulk nonthermal energization.more » We find that the main acceleration mechanism is a Fermi-type acceleration accomplished by the particle curvature drift motion along the electric field induced by the reconnection outflows. Although the acceleration mechanism is similar for different plasma β, low-β reconnection drives fast acceleration on Alfvénic timescales and develops power laws out of thermal distribution. Thus, the nonthermally dominated acceleration resulting from magnetic reconnection in low-β plasma may have strong implications for the highly efficient electron acceleration in solar flares and other astrophysical systems.« less

  10. Nonthermally dominated electron acceleration during magnetic reconnection in a low-β plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Xiaocan; Guo, Fan; Li, Hui; Li, Gang

    2015-09-24

    By means of fully kinetic simulations, we investigate electron acceleration during magnetic reconnection in a nonrelativistic proton–electron plasma with conditions similar to solar corona and flares. We demonstrate that reconnection leads to a nonthermally dominated electron acceleration with a power-law energy distribution in the nonrelativistic low-β regime but not in the high-β regime, where β is the ratio of the plasma thermal pressure and the magnetic pressure. The accelerated electrons contain most of the dissipated magnetic energy in the low-β regime. A guiding-center current description is used to reveal the role of electron drift motions during the bulk nonthermal energization. We find that the main acceleration mechanism is a Fermi-type acceleration accomplished by the particle curvature drift motion along the electric field induced by the reconnection outflows. Although the acceleration mechanism is similar for different plasma β, low-β reconnection drives fast acceleration on Alfvénic timescales and develops power laws out of thermal distribution. Thus, the nonthermally dominated acceleration resulting from magnetic reconnection in low-β plasma may have strong implications for the highly efficient electron acceleration in solar flares and other astrophysical systems.

  11. NONTHERMALLY DOMINATED ELECTRON ACCELERATION DURING MAGNETIC RECONNECTION IN A LOW-β PLASMA

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Xiaocan; Li, Gang; Guo, Fan; Li, Hui

    2015-10-01

    By means of fully kinetic simulations, we investigate electron acceleration during magnetic reconnection in a nonrelativistic proton–electron plasma with conditions similar to solar corona and flares. We demonstrate that reconnection leads to a nonthermally dominated electron acceleration with a power-law energy distribution in the nonrelativistic low-β regime but not in the high-β regime, where β is the ratio of the plasma thermal pressure and the magnetic pressure. The accelerated electrons contain most of the dissipated magnetic energy in the low-β regime. A guiding-center current description is used to reveal the role of electron drift motions during the bulk nonthermal energization. We find that the main acceleration mechanism is a Fermi-type acceleration accomplished by the particle curvature drift motion along the electric field induced by the reconnection outflows. Although the acceleration mechanism is similar for different plasma β, low-β reconnection drives fast acceleration on Alfvénic timescales and develops power laws out of thermal distribution. The nonthermally dominated acceleration resulting from magnetic reconnection in low-β plasma may have strong implications for the  highly efficient electron acceleration in solar flares and other astrophysical systems.

  12. Radiation from Accelerated Particles in Shocks and Reconnections

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nishikawa, K.-I.; Zhang, B.; Niemiec, J.; Medvedev, M.; Hardee, P.; Mizuno, Y.; Nordlund, A.; Frederiksen, J. T.; Sol, H.; Pohl, M.; Hartmann, D. H.; Fishman, G. J.

    2011-01-01

    Plasma instabilities are responsible not only for the onset and mediation of collisionless shocks but also for the associated acceleration of particles. We have investigated particle acceleration and shock structure associated with an unmagnetized relativistic electron-positron jet propagating into an unmagnetized electron-positron plasma. Cold jet electrons are thermalized and slowed while the ambient electrons are swept up to create a partially developed hydrodynamic-like shock structure. In the leading shock, electron density increases by a factor of about 3.5 in the simulation frame. Strong electromagnetic fields are generated in the trailing shock and provide an emission site. These magnetic fields contribute to the electrons transverse deflection and, more generally, relativistic acceleration behind the shock. We have calculated, self-consistently, the radiation from electrons accelerated in the turbulent magnetic fields. We found that the synthetic spectra depend on the Lorentz factor of the jet, its thermal temperature and strength of the generated magnetic fields. We are currently investigating the specific case of a jet colliding with an anti-parallel magnetized ambient medium. The properties of the radiation may be important for understanding the complex time evolution and/or spectral structure in gamma-ray bursts, relativistic jets in general, and supernova remnants.

  13. Disruption of sheet-like structures in Alfvénic turbulence by magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mallet, A.; Schekochihin, A. A.; Chandran, B. D. G.

    2017-07-01

    We propose a mechanism whereby the intense, sheet-like structures naturally formed by dynamically aligning Alfvénic turbulence are destroyed by magnetic reconnection at a scale \\hat{λ }_D, larger than the dissipation scale predicted by models of intermittent, dynamically aligning turbulence. The reconnection process proceeds in several stages: first, a linear tearing mode with N magnetic islands grows and saturates, and then the X-points between these islands collapse into secondary current sheets, which then reconnect until the original structure is destroyed. This effectively imposes an upper limit on the anisotropy of the structures within the perpendicular plane, which means that at scale \\hat{λ }_D the turbulent dynamics change: at scales larger than \\hat{λ }_D, the turbulence exhibits scale-dependent dynamic alignment and a spectral index approximately equal to -3/2, while at scales smaller than \\hat{λ }_D, the turbulent structures undergo a succession of disruptions due to reconnection, limiting dynamic alignment, steepening the effective spectral index and changing the final dissipation scale. The scaling of \\hat{λ }_D with the Lundquist (magnetic Reynolds) number S_{L_\\perp } depends on the order of the statistics being considered, and on the specific model of intermittency; the transition between the two regimes in the energy spectrum is predicted at approximately \\hat{λ }_D˜ S_{L_\\perp }^{-0.6}. The spectral index below \\hat{λ }_D is bounded between -5/3 and -2.3. The final dissipation scale is at \\hat{λ }_{η ,∞}˜ S_{L_\\perp }^{-3/4}, the same as the Kolmogorov scale arising in theories of turbulence that do not involve scale-dependent dynamic alignment.

  14. Bursty, Broadband Electromagnetic Waves Associated with Thin Current Layers and Turbulent Magnetosheath Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Adrian, M. L.; Wendel, D. E.

    2011-01-01

    We investigate observations of intense bursts of electromagnetic wave energy in association with the thin current layers of turbulent magnetosheath reconnection. These observed emissions form two distinct types: (i) broadband emissions that extend continuously to lOs of Hertz; and (ii) structured bursts of emitted energy that occur above 80-Hz, often displaying features reminiscent of absorption bands and are observed at local minima in the magnetic field. We present detailed analyses of these intense bursts of electromagnetic energy and quantify their proximity to X- and O-nulls, as well as their correlation to the amount of magnetic energy converted by the process of magnetic reconnection.

  15. Development of Turbulent Magnetic Reconnection in a Magnetic Island

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Can; Lu, Quanming; Wang, Rongsheng; Guo, Fan; Wu, Mingyu; Lu, San; Wang, Shui

    2017-02-01

    In this paper, with two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations, we report that the electron Kelvin–Helmholtz instability is unstable in the current layer associated with a large-scale magnetic island, which is formed in multiple X-line guide field reconnections. The current sheet is fragmented into many small current sheets with widths down to the order of the electron inertial length. Secondary magnetic reconnection then occurs in these fragmented current sheets, which leads to a turbulent state. The electrons are highly energized in such a process.

  16. On the role of pseudodisk warping and reconnection in protostellar disk formation in turbulent magnetized cores

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Zhi-Yun; Zhao, Bo; Krasnopolsky, Ruben; Shang, Hsien

    2014-10-01

    The formation of rotationally supported protostellar disks is suppressed in ideal MHD in non-turbulent cores with aligned magnetic fields and rotation axes. A promising way to resolve this so-called 'magnetic braking catastrophe' is through turbulence. The reason for the turbulence-enabled disk formation is usually attributed to the turbulence-induced magnetic reconnection, which is thought to reduce the magnetic flux accumulated in the disk-forming region. We advance an alternative interpretation, based on magnetic decoupling-triggered reconnection of severely pinched field lines close to the central protostar and turbulence-induced warping of the pseudodisk of Galli and Shu. Such reconnection weakens the central split magnetic monopole that lies at the heart of the magnetic braking catastrophe under flux freezing. We show, through idealized numerical experiments, that the pseudodisk can be strongly warped, but not completely destroyed, by a subsonic or sonic turbulence. The warping decreases the rates of angular momentum removal from the pseudodisk by both magnetic torque and outflow, making it easier to form a rotationally supported disk. More importantly, the warping of the pseudodisk out of the disk-forming, equatorial plane greatly reduces the amount of magnetic flux threading the circumstellar, disk-forming region, further promoting disk formation. The beneficial effects of pseudodisk warping can also be achieved by a misalignment between the magnetic field and rotation axis. These two mechanisms of disk formation, enabled by turbulence and field-rotation misalignment respectively, are thus unified. We find that the disks formed in turbulent magnetized cores are rather thick and significantly magnetized. Implications of these findings, particularly for the thick young disk inferred in L1527, are briefly discussed.

  17. Models of coronal heating, turbulence and fast reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Velli, M.; Pucci, F.; Rappazzo, F.; Tenerani, A.

    2015-04-01

    Coronal heating is at the origin of the EUV and X-ray emission and mass loss from the sun and many other stars. While different scenarios have been proposed to explain the heating of magnetically confined and open regions of the corona, they must all rely on the transfer, storage and dissipation of the abundant energy present in photospheric motions, which, coupled to magnetic fields, give rise to the complex phenomenology seen at the chromosphere and transition region (i.e. spicules, jets, 'tornadoes'). Here we discuss models and numerical simulations which rely on magnetic fields and electric currents both for energy transfer and for storage in the corona. We will revisit the sources and frequency spectrum of kinetic and electromagnetic energies, the role of boundary conditions, and the routes to small scales required for effective dissipation. Because reconnection in current sheets has been, and still is, one of the most important processes for coronal heating, we will also discuss recent aspects concerning the triggering of reconnection instabilities and the transition to fast reconnection.

  18. Models of coronal heating, turbulence and fast reconnection.

    PubMed

    Velli, M; Pucci, F; Rappazzo, F; Tenerani, A

    2015-05-28

    Coronal heating is at the origin of the EUV and X-ray emission and mass loss from the sun and many other stars. While different scenarios have been proposed to explain the heating of magnetically confined and open regions of the corona, they must all rely on the transfer, storage and dissipation of the abundant energy present in photospheric motions, which, coupled to magnetic fields, give rise to the complex phenomenology seen at the chromosphere and transition region (i.e. spicules, jets, 'tornadoes'). Here we discuss models and numerical simulations which rely on magnetic fields and electric currents both for energy transfer and for storage in the corona. We will revisit the sources and frequency spectrum of kinetic and electromagnetic energies, the role of boundary conditions, and the routes to small scales required for effective dissipation. Because reconnection in current sheets has been, and still is, one of the most important processes for coronal heating, we will also discuss recent aspects concerning the triggering of reconnection instabilities and the transition to fast reconnection.

  19. The role of three-dimensional transport in driving enhanced electron acceleration during magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dahlin, J. T.; Drake, J. F.; Swisdak, M.

    2017-09-01

    Magnetic reconnection is an important driver of energetic particles in many astrophysical phenomena. Using kinetic particle-in-cell simulations, we explore the impact of three-dimensional reconnection dynamics on the efficiency of particle acceleration. In two-dimensional systems, Alfvénic outflows expel energetic electrons into flux ropes where they become trapped and disconnected from acceleration regions. However, in three-dimensional systems these flux ropes develop an axial structure that enables particles to leak out and return to acceleration regions. This requires a finite guide field so that particles may move quickly along the flux rope axis. We show that greatest energetic electron production occurs when the guide field is of the same order as the reconnecting component: large enough to facilitate strong transport, but not so large as to throttle the dominant Fermi mechanism responsible for efficient electron acceleration. This suggests a natural explanation for the envelope of electron acceleration during the impulsive phase of eruptive flares.

  20. Detection of thin current sheets and associated reconnection in the Earth's turbulent magnetosheath using cluster multi-point measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chasapis, Alexandros; Retino, Alessandro; Sahraoui, Fouad; Greco, Antonella; Vaivads, Andris; Sundkvist, David; Canu, Patrick

    2013-04-01

    Magnetic reconnection occurs in turbulent plasma within a large number of volume-filling thin current sheets and is one major candidate for energy dissipation of turbulent plasma. Such dissipation results in particle heating and non-thermal particle acceleration. In situ observations are needed to study the detailed properties of thin current sheets and associated reconnection, in order to determine its importance as a dissipation mechanism at small scales. In particular, multi-point measurements are crucial to unambiguously identify spatial scales (e.g current sheet thickness) and estimate key quantities such as E*J. Here we present a study of the properties of thin current sheets detected in the Earths magnetosheath downstream of the quasi-parallel shock by using Cluster spacecraft data. The current sheets were detected by the rotation of the magnetic field as computed by four-point measurements. We study the distribution of current sheets as a function of the magnetic shear angle θ, their duration and the waiting time between consecutive current sheets. We found that high shear (θ > 90 degrees) current sheets show different properties with respect to low shear current sheets (θ < 90 degrees). These high-shear current sheets account for about ˜ 20% of the total and have an average thickness comparable to the ion inertial length. We also compare our four-point detection method with other single-point methods (e.g. Partial Variance of Increments - PVI) and we discuss the results of such comparison.

  1. Nonthermal Particle Acceleration in 3D Relativistic Magnetic Reconnection in Pair Plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uzdensky, Dmitri; Werner, Gregory; Zhdankin, Vladimir

    2016-10-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a fundamental plasma process that converts magnetic energy into particle kinetic energy. ``Relativistic'' reconnection is of interest in astrophysical contexts because it can accelerate particles to relativistic energies high enough for synchrotron (or inverse Compton) emission to explain observed high-energy radiation. After several 2D particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations of reconnection in pair plasmas demonstrated power-law electron-energy spectra extending to high energies, a few 3D simulations surprisingly confirmed the robustness of nonthermal particle acceleration, despite fundamental differences, such as the development of the relativistic drift-kink instability (RDKI) in 3D. We present a comprehensive PIC study of 3D relativistic pair-plasma reconnection characterizing the effect of the third dimension. We investigate how reconnection dynamics and particle acceleration depend on guide magnetic field Bz and on the simulation box length Lz in the third dimension. We find that, while the RDKI does indeed grow in 3D reconnection, it does not inhibit particle acceleration, even in the absence of guide field. This work was funded by NSF, DOE, and NASA.

  2. Secondary reconnection, energisation and turbulence in dipolarisation fronts: results of a 3D kinetic simulation campaign

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lapenta, Giovanni; Goldman, Martin; Newman, David; olshevskyi, Vyacheslav; Markidis, Stefano

    2016-04-01

    Dipolarization fronts (DF) are formed by reconnection outflows interacting with the pre-existing environment. These regions are host of important energy exchanges [1], particle acceleration [2] and a complex structure and evolution [3]. Our recent work has investigated these regions via fully kinetic 3D simulations [4]. As reported recently on Nature Physics [3], based on 3D fully kinetic simulations started with a well defined x-line, we observe that in the DF reconnection transitions towards a more chaotic regime. In the fronts an instability devel- ops caused by the local gradients of the density and by the unfavourable acceleration and field line curvature. The consequence is the break up of the fronts in a fashion similar to the classical fluid Rayleigh-Taylor instability with the formation of "fingers" of plasma and embedded magnetic fields. These fingers interact and produce secondary reconnection sites. We present several different diagnostics that prove the existence of these secondary reconnection sites. Each site is surrounded by its own electron diffusion region. At the fronts the ions are generally not magnetized and considerable ion slippage is present. The discovery we present is that electrons are also slipping, forming localized diffusion regions near secondary reconnection sites [1]. The consequence of this discovery is twofold. First, the instability in the fronts has strong energetic implications. We observe that the energy transfer locally is very strong, an order of magnitude stronger than in the "X" line. However, this energy transfer is of both signs as it is natural for a wavy rippling with regions of magnetic to kinetic and regions of kinetic to magnetic energy conversion. Second, and most important for this session, is that MMS should not limit the search for electron diffusion regions to the location marked with X in all reconnection cartoons. Our simulations predict more numerous and perhaps more easily measurable electron diffusion

  3. The Effect of Cooling on Particle Trajectories and Acceleration in Relativistic Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kagan, Daniel; Nakar, Ehud; Piran, Tsvi

    2016-12-01

    The maximum synchrotron burnoff limit of 160 MeV represents a fundamental limit to radiation resulting from electromagnetic particle acceleration in one-zone ideal plasmas. In magnetic reconnection, however, particle acceleration and radiation are decoupled because the electric field is larger than the magnetic field in the diffusion region. We carry out two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations to determine the extent to which magnetic reconnection can produce synchrotron radiation above the burnoff limit. We use the test particle comparison (TPC) method to isolate the effects of cooling by comparing the trajectories and acceleration efficiencies of test particles incident on such a reconnection region with and without cooling them. We find that the cooled and uncooled particle trajectories are typically similar during acceleration in the reconnection region, and derive an effective limit on particle acceleration that is inversely proportional to the average magnetic field experienced by the particle during acceleration. Using the calculated distribution of this average magnetic field as a function of uncooled final particle energy, we find analytically that cooling does not affect power-law particle energy spectra except at energies far above the synchrotron burnoff limit. Finally, we compare fully cooled and uncooled simulations of reconnection, confirming that the synchrotron burnoff limit does not produce a cutoff in the particle energy spectrum. Our results indicate that the TPC method accurately predicts the effects of cooling on particle acceleration in relativistic reconnection, and that, even far above the burnoff limit, the synchrotron energy of radiation produced in reconnection is not limited by cooling.

  4. Accelerated Flows at Jupiter's Magnetopause: Evidence for Magnetic Reconnection Along the Dawn Flank

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ebert, R. W.; Allegrini, F.; Bolton, S. J.; Bagenal, F.; Connerney, J. E. P.; Clark, G. B.; Kurth, W. S.; Levin, S.; Louarn, P.; Mauk, B.; McComas, D. J.; Reno, M. L.; Thomsen, M. F.; Valek, P. W.; Weidner, S.; Wilson, R. J.

    2016-12-01

    Magnetic reconnection is the physical process whereby magnetic fields separated by a thin current sheet merge and are reoriented. This process also releases magnetic energy that can heat and energize the local plasma, leading to the production of accelerated flows or jets that can be detected far from the reconnection site. Evidence of magnetic reconnection has been observed in a number of different space environments, including the magnetopause of several planetary magnetospheres. At Earth, reconnection on the dayside magnetopause can lead to the transfer of mass, energy, and momentum from the solar wind to the magnetosphere, triggering geomagnetic storms and aurora through a process known as the Dungey Cycle. At Jupiter, observations point to magnetopause reconnection being intermittent and its role in driving magnetospheric dynamics is still open to debate. The arrival of Juno at Jupiter in July 2016 has provided a new opportunity to explore the outer boundaries of Jupiter's magnetosphere. During its approach, Juno made several crossings of Jupiter's dawn magnetopause, many of which were characterized by observations of 0.01 - 50 keV/q ion and 0.1 - 100 keV electron distributions from the Jovian Auroral Distributions Experiment (JADE). These observations show evidence of accelerated flows near the magnetopause during a number of crossings that are indicative of ongoing reconnection. In this presentation, we will describe the plasma and magnetic field observations near Jupiter's magnetopause and explore the conditions under which magnetic reconnection may be taking place along Jupiter's dawn flank.

  5. Magnetic moment conservation and particles acceleration in turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalena, S.; Greco, A.; Matthaeus, W. H.

    2010-12-01

    The present work concerns the study of particle magnetic moment conservation in the presence of turbulent magnetic fields. As we know from the particle orbit theory, for slow temporal and spatial magnetic field variations(i.e. if their characteristic length and time are greater than the particle orbit diameter and the time spent by a particle to execute one orbit, respectively), the magnetic moment, defined as μ = (v^2⊥ /B) (averaged over the particle gyroperiod) is an adiabatic invariant and remains constant during particle motion. But in presence of a well developed magnetic turbulence μ can undergo rapid variations and might not be constant anymore. Of course, this fact could influence particle acceleration and could have a considerable implications in many astrophysical problems, such as coronal heating. In order to reproduce and extend some of the results obtained by Karimabadi et al. 1992, we study the interaction between ions and a single or a couple of electromagnetic waves. We varied both the wave frequency and the cosine of pitch angle at which particles are injected, in order to observe in this very simple case which is the limit for magnetic moment conservation. We also will reconsider the results of Dmitruk and Matthaeus (2006) regarding particle acceleration in turbulence, taking into account statistics of the magnetic moment (see also Lehe et al., 2010). Later we will add more waves to obtain a complete turbulent spectrum. The final aim of this research work is the understanding the behavior of particles magnetic moment during magnetic reconnection phenomena. H. Karimabadi, D. Krauss-Varban and T. Teresawa, JGR, 97, 13853, 1992. P. Dmitruk and W. H. Matthaeus, JGR, 11, A12110, 2006. R. Lehe, I. J. Parrish and E. Quataert, Astrophys. J. 707, 404, 2009.

  6. A MODEL OF ACCELERATION OF ANOMALOUS COSMIC RAYS BY RECONNECTION IN THE HELIOSHEATH

    SciTech Connect

    Lazarian, A.; Opher, M. E-mail: mopher@gmu.ed

    2009-09-20

    We discuss a model of cosmic ray acceleration that accounts for the observations of anomalous cosmic rays (ACRs) by Voyager 1 and 2. The model appeals to fast magnetic reconnection rather than shocks as the driver of acceleration. The ultimate source of energy is associated with magnetic field reversals that occur in the heliosheath. It is expected that the magnetic field reversals will occur throughout the heliosheath, but especially near the heliopause where the flows slow down and diverge with respect to the interstellar wind and also in the boundary sector in the heliospheric current sheet. While the first-order Fermi acceleration theory within reconnection layers is in its infancy, the predictions do not contradict the available data on ACR spectra measured by the spacecraft. We argue that the Voyager data are one of the first pieces of evidence favoring the acceleration within regions of fast magnetic reconnection, which we believe to be a widely spread astrophysical process.

  7. Two-fluid numerical simulations of turbulence inside Kelvin-Helmholtz vortices: Intermittency and reconnecting current sheets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rossi, C.; Califano, F.; Retinò, A.; Sorriso-Valvo, L.; Henri, P.; Servidio, S.; Valentini, F.; Chasapis, A.; Rezeau, L.

    2015-12-01

    The turbulence developing inside Kelvin-Helmholtz vortices has been studied using a two-fluid numerical simulation. From an initial large-scale velocity shear, the nonlinear evolution of the instability leads to the formation of a region inside the initial vortex characterized by small-scale fluctuations and structures. The magnetic energy spectrum is compatible with a Kolmogorov-like power-law decay, followed by a steeper power-law below proton scales, in agreement with other studies. The magnetic field increments show non-Gaussian distributions with increasing tails going towards smaller scales, consistent with presence of intermittency. The strong magnetic field fluctuations populating the tails of the distributions have been identified as current sheets by using the Partial Variance of the Increments (PVI) method. The strongest current sheets (largest PVI) appear around proton scales and below. By selecting several of such current sheets, it has been found that most of them are consistent with ongoing magnetic reconnection. The detailed study of one reconnecting current sheet as crossed by a virtual spacecraft is also presented. Inflow and outflow regions have been identified and the reconnection rate has been estimated. The observation of reconnection rates higher than typical fast rate ˜0.1 suggests that reconnection in turbulent plasma can be faster than laminar reconnection. This study indicates that intermittency and reconnecting current sheets are important ingredients of turbulence within Kelvin-Helmholtz vortices and that reconnection can play an important role for energy dissipation therein.

  8. Particle heating and acceleration during collisionless reconnection in a laboratory plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoo, Jongsoo

    2013-10-01

    Particle heating and acceleration during magnetic reconnection is studied in the collisionless plasma of the Magnetic Reconnection Experiment (MRX). For ion heating and acceleration, the role of the in-plane (Hall) electric field is emphasized. An in-plane electrostatic potential profile is established by electron acceleration near the X-point. The potential profile shows a well structure along the direction normal to the reconnection current sheet that becomes deeper and wider downstream as its boundary expands along the separatrices where the in-plane electric field is strongest. The Hall electric field ballistically accelerates ions near the separatrices toward the outflow direction. After ions are accelerated, they are heated as they travel into the high-pressure downstream region due to an effect called re-magnetization. Electrons are also significantly heated during reconnection. The electron temperature sharply increases across the separatrices and peaks just outside of the electron diffusion region. Classical Ohmic dissipation based on the perpendicular Spitzer resistivity is too small to compensate for the energy loss by parallel heat conduction, indicating the presence of anomalous electron heating. Finally, a total energy inventory is calculated based on analysis of the Poynting, enthalpy, flow energy, and heat flux in the measured diffusion layer. More than half of the incoming magnetic energy is converted to particle energy during reconnection. The author thanks contributions from M. Yamada, H. Ji, J. Jara-Almonte, and C. E. Myers. This work is supported by DOE and NSF.

  9. Nonthermal Particle Acceleration in 3D Relativistic Magnetic Reconnection in Pair Plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Werner, Gregory R.; Uzdensky, Dmitri A.

    2017-07-01

    As a fundamental process converting magnetic to plasma energy in high-energy astrophysical plasmas, relativistic magnetic reconnection is a leading explanation for the acceleration of particles to the ultrarelativistic energies that are necessary to power nonthermal emission (especially X-rays and gamma-rays) in pulsar magnetospheres and pulsar wind nebulae, coronae and jets of accreting black holes, and gamma-ray bursts. An important objective of plasma astrophysics is therefore the characterization of nonthermal particle acceleration (NTPA) effected by reconnection. Reconnection-powered NTPA has been demonstrated over a wide range of physical conditions using large 2D kinetic simulations. However, its robustness in realistic 3D reconnection—in particular, whether the 3D relativistic drift-kink instability (RDKI) disrupts NTPA—has not been systematically investigated, although pioneering 3D simulations have observed NTPA in isolated cases. Here, we present the first comprehensive study of NTPA in 3D relativistic reconnection in collisionless electron-positron plasmas, characterizing NTPA as the strength of 3D effects is varied systematically via the length in the third dimension and the strength of the guide magnetic field. We find that, while the RDKI prominently perturbs 3D reconnecting current sheets, it does not suppress particle acceleration, even for zero guide field; fully 3D reconnection robustly and efficiently produces nonthermal power-law particle spectra closely resembling those obtained in 2D. This finding provides strong support for reconnection as the key mechanism powering high-energy flares in various astrophysical systems. We also show that strong guide fields significantly inhibit NTPA, slowing reconnection and limiting the energy available for plasma energization, yielding steeper and shorter power-law spectra.

  10. The effect of acceleration on turbulent entrainment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Breidenthal, Robert E.

    2008-12-01

    A new class of self-similar turbulent flows is proposed, which exhibits dramatically reduced entrainment rates. Under strong acceleration, the rotation period of the large-scale vortices is forced to decrease linearly in time. In ordinary unforced turbulence, the rotation period always increases linearly with time, at least in the mean. However, by imposing an exponential acceleration on the flow, the vortex rotation period is forced to become the e-folding timescale of the acceleration. If the e-folding timescale itself decreases linearly in time, the forcing is 'super-exponential', characterized by an acceleration parameter α. Based on dimensional and heuristic arguments, a model suggests that the dissipation rate is an exponential function of α and the dimensions of the conserved quantity of the flow. Acceleration decreases the dissipation and entrainment rates in all canonical laboratory flows except for Rayleigh-Taylor. Experiments of exponential jets and super-exponential transverse jets are in accord with the model. As noted by Johari, acceleration is the only known means of affecting the entrainment rate of the far-field jet. Numerical simulations of Rayleigh-Taylor flow by Cook and Greenough are also consistent. In the limit of large acceleration, vortices do not move far before their rotation period changes substantially. In this sense, extreme acceleration corresponds to stationary vortices.

  11. Evidence of electron acceleration around the reconnection X-point in a solar flare

    SciTech Connect

    Narukage, Noriyuki; Shimojo, Masumi; Sakao, Taro

    2014-06-01

    Particle acceleration is one of the most significant features that are ubiquitous among space and cosmic plasmas. It is most prominent during flares in the case of the Sun, with which huge amounts of electromagnetic radiation and high-energy particles are expelled into the interplanetary space through acceleration of plasma particles in the corona. Though it has been well understood that energies of flares are supplied by the mechanism called magnetic reconnection based on the observations in X-rays and EUV with space telescopes, where and how in the flaring magnetic field plasmas are accelerated has remained unknown due to the low plasma density in the flaring corona. We here report the first observational identification of the energetic non-thermal electrons around the point of the ongoing magnetic reconnection (X-point), with the location of the X-point identified by soft X-ray imagery and the localized presence of non-thermal electrons identified from imaging-spectroscopic data at two microwave frequencies. Considering the existence of the reconnection outflows that carries both plasma particles and magnetic fields out from the X-point, our identified non-thermal microwave emissions around the X-point indicate that the electrons are accelerated around the reconnection X-point. Additionally, the plasma around the X-point was also thermally heated up to 10 MK. The estimated reconnection rate of this event is ∼0.017.

  12. Acceleration of charged particles in magnetic reconnection Solar flares, the magnetosphere, and solar wind

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goldstein, M. L.; Matthaeus, W. H.; Ambrosiano, J. J.

    1986-01-01

    A possible source of free energy available for accelerating charged particles is conversion of magnetic energy to particle energy in reconnecting magnetic fields. Recent simulations using test particles suggests that reconnection may efficiently accelerate particles to the maximum energies that are observed in several astrophysical contexts. A simple analytic formula is used in conjunction with the simulation results to predict the maximum energy achievable in a particular plasma environment with the result that in solar flares reconnection is capable of accelerating particles to several GeV. In magnetospheric substorms the predicted maximum can reach several hundred keV, and near magnetic sector crossings in the solar wind the maximum energy can approach 100 keV.

  13. Magnetic reconnection in toroidal eta(i) mode turbulence

    PubMed

    Zeiler; Drake; Rogers

    2000-01-03

    Based on three-dimensional simulations of the Braginskii equations we show that for typical plasma-edge parameters the saturation of electromagnetic toroidal eta(i) mode turbulence is controlled by the self-generation and subsequent annihilation of radial magnetic field perturbations. This should be contrasted with the electrostatic limit, where the growth of the linear eta(i) mode is terminated by the onset of sheared flow modes driven by the radial plasma streams. The impact of the saturation amplitude on the transport level is substantial and is not in accord with simple mixing length arguments, suggesting that electromagnetic effects should generally be included in simulations of eta(i) mode turbulence.

  14. Adiabatic Non-resonant Acceleration in Magnetic Turbulence and Hard Spectra of Gamma-Ray Bursts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Siyao; Zhang, Bing

    2017-09-01

    We introduce a non-resonant acceleration mechanism arising from the second adiabatic invariant in magnetic turbulence and apply it to study the prompt emission spectra of gamma-ray bursts (GRBs). The mechanism contains both the first- and second-order Fermi acceleration, originating from the interacting turbulent reconnection and dynamo processes. It leads to a hard electron energy distribution up to a cutoff energy at the balance between the acceleration and synchrotron cooling. The sufficient acceleration rate ensures a rapid hardening of any initial energy distribution to a power-law distribution with the index p∼ 1, which naturally produces a low-energy photon index α ∼ -1 via the synchrotron radiation. For typical GRB parameters, the synchrotron emission can extend to a characteristic photon energy on the order of ∼100 keV.

  15. Exploring reconnection, current sheets, and dissipation in a laboratory MHD turbulence experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaffner, D. A.

    2015-12-01

    The Swarthmore Spheromak Experiment (SSX) can serve as a testbed for studying MHD turbulence in a controllable laboratory setting, and in particular, explore the phenomena of reconnection, current sheets and dissipation in MHD turbulence. Plasma with turbulently fluctuating magnetic and velocity fields can be generated using a plasma gun source and launched into a flux-conserving cylindrical tunnel. No background magnetic field is applied so internal fields are allowed to evolve dynamically. Point measurements of magnetic and velocity fluctuations yield broadband power-law spectra with a steepening breakpoint indicative of the onset of a dissipation scale. The frequency range at which this steepening occurs can be correlated to the ion inertial scale of the plasma, a length which is characteristic of the size of current sheets in MHD plasmas and suggests a connection to dissipation. Observation of non-Gaussian intermittent jumps in magnetic field magnitude and angle along with measurements of ion temperature bursts suggests the presence of current sheets embedded within the turbulent plasma, and possibly even active reconnection sites. Additionally, structure function analysis coupled with appeals to fractal scaling models support the hypothesis that current sheets are associated with dissipation in this system.

  16. The Link Between Shocks, Turbulence, and Magnetic Reconnection in Collisionless Plasmas

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Karimabadi, H.; Roytershteyn, V.; Vu, H. X.; Omelchenko, Y. A.; Scudder, J.; Daughton, W.; Dimmock, A.; Nykyri, K.; Wan, M.; Sibeck, D.; Tatineni, M.; Majumdar, A.; Loring, B.; Geveci, B.

    2014-01-01

    Global hybrid (electron fluid, kinetic ions) and fully kinetic simulations of the magnetosphere have been used to show surprising interconnection between shocks, turbulence and magnetic reconnection. In particular collisionless shocks with their reflected ions that can get upstream before retransmission can generate previously unforeseen phenomena in the post shocked flows: (i) formation of reconnecting current sheets and magnetic islands with sizes up to tens of ion inertial length. (ii) Generation of large scale low frequency electromagnetic waves that are compressed and amplified as they cross the shock. These 'wavefronts' maintain their integrity for tens of ion cyclotron times but eventually disrupt and dissipate their energy. (iii) Rippling of the shock front, which can in turn lead to formation of fast collimated jets extending to hundreds of ion inertial lengths downstream of the shock. The jets, which have high dynamical pressure, 'stir' the downstream region, creating large scale disturbances such as vortices, sunward flows, and can trigger flux ropes along the magnetopause. This phenomenology closes the loop between shocks, turbulence and magnetic reconnection in ways previously unrealized. These interconnections appear generic for the collisionless plasmas typical of space, and are expected even at planar shocks, although they will also occur at curved shocks as occur at planets or around ejecta.

  17. Particle acceleration at 3D reconnecting magnetic separators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Threlfall, James; Neukirch, Thomas; Parnell, Clare; Stevenson, Julie

    2015-04-01

    We present results of test particle orbit calculations in three different environments which model separator reconnection in three dimensions. The test particle (electron and proton) orbits are calculated using the relativistic guiding centre approximation. We investigate test particle orbits in a time-dependent (analytical) electro-magnetic field configuration [detailed in Threlfall et al. (A&A, in press); arXiv:1410.6465]. These results are also compared with orbits based upon large-scale 3D MHD simulations of both a single reconnecting magnetic separator and an observationally driven 3D model of a solar active region which contains several topological features of interest, including separators. We discuss how the test-particle orbits and the energy gain depend on the initial conditions, and how observations (for example, of solar flares) may be used to constrain model parameters.

  18. Suprathermal electron acceleration at reconnection jet fronts and braking regions in the Earth's magnetotail

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Retinò, Alessandro; Vaivads, Andris; Zieger, Bertalan; Fujimoto, Masaki; Kasahara, Satoshi; Nakamura, Rumi; Chasapis, Alexandros; Fu, Huishan

    2013-04-01

    Magnetic reconnection is an efficient mechanisms for accelerating charged particles to energies much higher than their thermal energy. Important examples are the solar corona and planetary magnetospheres. A number of recent numerical simulations as well as in situ observations in Earth's magnetotail indicate that strong acceleration occurs at reconnection jet fronts, the boundary separating jetting from ambient plasma, and in jet braking regions, where jets eventually stop/dissipate. Yet the details of the acceleration mechanisms are not fully understood. Here we present a few examples of jet fronts/braking regions and associated suprathermal electron acceleration in the Earth's magnetotail, by using Cluster spacecraft data. We discuss the properties of accelerated electrons and electromagnetic fields for both jet front and jet braking regions.

  19. Nonthermally Dominated Electron Acceleration during Magnetic Reconnection in a Low-beta Plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Xiaocan

    2015-07-21

    This work was motivated by electron acceleration during solar flares. After some introductory remarks on proposed particle acceleration mechanisms and questions needing answers, dynamic simulations and simulation results are presented including energy spectra and the formation of the power law distribution. In summary, magnetic reconnection is highly efficient at converting the free magnetic energy stored in a magnetic shear and accelerating electrons to nonthermal energies in low-β regime. The nonthermal electrons have a dominant fraction and form power-law energy spectra with spectral index p ~ 1 in low-β regime. Electrons are preferentially accelerated along the curvature drift direction along the electric field induced by the reconnection outflow. The results can be applied to explain the observations of electron acceleration during solar flares.

  20. On the ions acceleration via collisionless magnetic reconnection in laboratory plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cazzola, E.; Curreli, D.; Markidis, S.; Lapenta, G.

    2016-11-01

    This work presents an analysis of the ion outflow from magnetic reconnection throughout fully kinetic simulations with typical laboratory plasma values. A symmetric initial configuration for the density and magnetic field is considered across the current sheet. After analyzing the behavior of a set of nine simulations with a reduced mass ratio and with a permuted value of three initial electron temperatures and magnetic field intensity, the best ion acceleration scenario is further studied with a realistic mass ratio in terms of the ion dynamics and energy budget. Interestingly, a series of shock wave structures are observed in the outflow, resembling the shock discontinuities found in recent magnetohydrodynamic simulations. An analysis of the ion outflow at several distances from the reconnection point is presented, in light of possible laboratory applications. The analysis suggests that magnetic reconnection could be used as a tool for plasma acceleration, with applications ranging from electric propulsion to production of ion thermal beams.

  1. Reconnection and small-scale fields in 2D-3V hybrid-kinetic driven turbulence simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cerri, S. S.; Califano, F.

    2017-02-01

    The understanding of the fundamental properties of turbulence in collisionless plasmas, such as the solar wind, is a frontier problem in plasma physics. In particular, the occurrence of magnetic reconnection in turbulent plasmas and its interplay with a fully-developed turbulent state is still a matter of great debate. Here we investigate the properties of small-scale electromagnetic fluctuations and the role of fast magnetic reconnection in the development of a quasi-steady turbulent state by means of 2D-3V high-resolution Vlasov–Maxwell simulations. At the largest scales turbulence is fed by external random forcing. We show that large-scale turbulent motions establish a -5/3 spectrum at {k}\\perp {d}i< 1 and, at the same time, feed the formation of current sheets where magnetic reconnection occurs. As a result coherent magnetic structures are generated which, together with the rise of the associated small-scale non-ideal electric field, mediate the transition between the inertial and the subproton-scale spectrum. A mechanism that boosts the magnetic reconnection process is identified, making the generation of coherent structures rapid enough to be competitive with wave mode interactions and leading to the formation of a fully-developed turbulent spectrum across the so-called ion break.

  2. Bursty, Broadband Electromagnetic Waves Associated with Three-Dimensional Nulls Observed in Turbulent Magnetosheath Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Adrian, Mark L.; Wendel, D. E.

    2012-01-01

    We investigate observations of intense bursts of electromagnetic wave energy in association with the thin current layers of turbulent magnetosheath reconnection. These observed emissions - typically detected in the layers immediately outside of the current layer proper - form two distinct types: (i) broadband emissions that extend continuously to lOs of Hertz; and (ii) structured bursts of emitted energy that occur above 80-Hz, often displaying features reminiscent of absorption bands and are observed near the local minima in the magnetic field. We present detailed analyses of these intense bursts of electromagnetic energy and quantify their proximity to X-IO-nulls and magnetic spine connected null pairs, as well as their correlation - if any - to the amount of magnetic energy converted by the process of magnetic reconnection.

  3. Particle acceleration by slow magnetosonic wave turbulence

    SciTech Connect

    Gallegos-Cruz, A.

    1997-06-01

    An important alternative for particle acceleration in a turbulent plasma is through magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) wave modes. However, particle acceleration by slow magnetosonic mode has been systematically disregarded for some nonquantitative considerations. Slow magnetosonic waves interchange energy with the medium through two basic processes: resonant (Landau and gyroresonant) and nonresonant (as viscosity and thermal conduction). The energized particles lose energy mainly through Coulombian collisions with the plasma particles. In this work, a quantitative study of the time scales involved in several energetic transfer wave{endash}particle processes is done. Comparison of all these time scales allows one to determine the possibilities that particle acceleration by slow magnetosonic wave mode may occur within the solar corona. It is shown that physical conditions can hardly exist within the solar corona, where thermal particles can be energized and form an acceleration spectrum after crossing the collisional barrier. {copyright} {ital 1997 American Institute of Physics.}

  4. Multispacecraft observations of the electron current sheet, neighboring magnetic islands, and electron acceleration during magnetotail reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Chen Lijen; Bessho, Naoki; Bhattacharjee, Amitava; Lefebvre, Bertrand; Vaith, Hans; Puhl-Quinn, Pamela; Torbert, Roy; Asnes, Arne; Fazakerley, Andrew; Khotyaintsev, Yuri; Daly, Patrick

    2009-05-15

    Open questions concerning structures and dynamics of diffusion regions and electron acceleration in collisionless magnetic reconnection are addressed based on data from the four-spacecraft mission Cluster and particle-in-cell simulations. Using time series of electron distribution functions measured by the four spacecraft, distinct electron regions around a reconnection layer are mapped out to set the framework for studying diffusion regions. A spatially extended electron current sheet (ecs), a series of magnetic islands, and bursts of energetic electrons within islands are identified during magnetotail reconnection with no appreciable guide field. The ecs is collocated with a layer of electron-scale electric fields normal to the ecs and pointing toward the ecs center plane. Both the observed electron and ion densities vary by more than a factor of 2 within one ion skin depth north and south of the ecs, and from the ecs into magnetic islands. Within each of the identified islands, there is a burst of suprathermal electrons whose fluxes peak at density compression sites [L.-J. Chen et al., Nat. Phys. 4, 19 (2008)] and whose energy spectra exhibit power laws with indices ranging from 6 to 7.3. These results indicate that the in-plane electric field normal to the ecs can be of the electron scale at certain phases of reconnection, electrons and ions are highly compressible within the ion diffusion region, and for reconnection involving magnetic islands, primary electron acceleration occurs within the islands.

  5. Evidence of Electron Acceleration around the Reconnection X-point in a Solar Flare

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Narukage, Noriyuki; Shimojo, Masumi; Sakao, Taro

    2016-05-01

    Particle acceleration is one of the most significant features that are ubiquitous among space and cosmic plasmas. It is most prominent during flares in the case of the Sun, with which huge amounts of electromagnetic radiation and high-energy particles are expelled into the interplanetary space through acceleration of plasma particles in the corona. Though it has been well understood that energies of flares are supplied by the mechanism called magnetic reconnection based on the observations in X-rays and EUV with space telescopes, where and how in the flaring magnetic field plasmas are accelerated has remained unknown due to the low plasma density in the flaring corona. We here report the first observational identification of the energetic non-thermal electrons around the point of the ongoing magnetic reconnection (X-point), with the location of the X-point identified by soft X-ray imagery and the localized presence of non-thermal electrons identified from imaging-spectroscopic data at two microwave frequencies. Considering the existence of the reconnection outflows that carries both plasma particles and magnetic fields out from the X-point, our identified non-thermal microwave emissions around the X-point indicate that the electrons are accelerated around the reconnection X-point.

  6. The Mechanisms of Electron Acceleration During Multiple X Line Magnetic Reconnection with a Guide Field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Huanyu; Lu, Quanming; Huang, Can; Wang, Shui

    2016-04-01

    The interactions between magnetic islands are considered to play an important role in electron acceleration during magnetic reconnection. In this paper, two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations are performed to study electron acceleration during multiple X line reconnection with a guide field. Because the electrons remain almost magnetized, we can analyze the contributions of the parallel electric field, Fermi, and betatron mechanisms to electron acceleration during the evolution of magnetic reconnection through comparison with a guide-center theory. The results show that with the magnetic reconnection proceeding, two magnetic islands are formed in the simulation domain. Next, the electrons are accelerated by both the parallel electric field in the vicinity of the X lines and the Fermi mechanism due to the contraction of the two magnetic islands. Then, the two magnetic islands begin to merge into one, and, in such a process, the electrons can be accelerated by both the parallel electric field and betatron mechanisms. During the betatron acceleration, the electrons are locally accelerated in the regions where the magnetic field is piled up by the high-speed flow from the X line. At last, when the coalescence of the two islands into one big island finishes, the electrons can be further accelerated by the Fermi mechanism because of the contraction of the big island. With the increase of the guide field, the contributions of the Fermi and betatron mechanisms to electron acceleration become less and less important. When the guide field is sufficiently large, the contributions of the Fermi and betatron mechanisms are almost negligible.

  7. THE MECHANISMS OF ELECTRON ACCELERATION DURING MULTIPLE X LINE MAGNETIC RECONNECTION WITH A GUIDE FIELD

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Huanyu; Lu, Quanming; Huang, Can; Wang, Shui

    2016-04-20

    The interactions between magnetic islands are considered to play an important role in electron acceleration during magnetic reconnection. In this paper, two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations are performed to study electron acceleration during multiple X line reconnection with a guide field. Because the electrons remain almost magnetized, we can analyze the contributions of the parallel electric field, Fermi, and betatron mechanisms to electron acceleration during the evolution of magnetic reconnection through comparison with a guide-center theory. The results show that with the magnetic reconnection proceeding, two magnetic islands are formed in the simulation domain. Next, the electrons are accelerated by both the parallel electric field in the vicinity of the X lines and the Fermi mechanism due to the contraction of the two magnetic islands. Then, the two magnetic islands begin to merge into one, and, in such a process, the electrons can be accelerated by both the parallel electric field and betatron mechanisms. During the betatron acceleration, the electrons are locally accelerated in the regions where the magnetic field is piled up by the high-speed flow from the X line. At last, when the coalescence of the two islands into one big island finishes, the electrons can be further accelerated by the Fermi mechanism because of the contraction of the big island. With the increase of the guide field, the contributions of the Fermi and betatron mechanisms to electron acceleration become less and less important. When the guide field is sufficiently large, the contributions of the Fermi and betatron mechanisms are almost negligible.

  8. Nonlinear propagation of whistler wave and turbulent spectrum in reconnection region of magnetopause

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharma, R. P.; Pathak, Neha; Yadav, Nitin; Sharma, Prachi

    2017-09-01

    Whistler waves have ample of observations in the magnetosphere near the dayside magnetopause. Also, the role of whistler waves is well established in the context of magnetic reconnection as well as turbulence generation. In the present work, we examine the combined effect of guide field and nonlinearity in the development of turbulence in magnetic reconnection sites. We have derived the dynamical equation of 3D whistler wave propagating through Harris sheet assuming that background number density and background field are perturbed. The nonlinear dynamical equation is then solved numerically using pseudo-spectral method and finite difference method. Simulation results represent the nonlinear evolution of X-O field line in the presence of nonlinearity, which causes the generation of turbulence. We have also investigated the formation of current sheet/coherent structures as a result of the proposed mechanism. These localized structures have transverse scale size of the order of electron inertial length. When the system reaches quasi steady state, we have evaluated power spectrum in magnetopause and it shows two different scaling having k-3 /2 for k λe<1 and k-3 for k λe>1 .The obtained results are consistent with the THEMIS observations. Energy distribution at smaller scales leads to the formation of thermal tail of energetic particles. The energy of these electrons is also calculated and comes out to be in the order of 100 keV.

  9. Reconnection-driven Magnetohydrodynamic Turbulence in a Simulated Coronal-hole Jet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uritsky, Vadim M.; Roberts, Merrill A.; DeVore, C. Richard; Karpen, Judith T.

    2017-03-01

    Extreme-ultraviolet and X-ray jets occur frequently in magnetically open coronal holes on the Sun, especially at high solar latitudes. Some of these jets are observed by white-light coronagraphs as they propagate through the outer corona toward the inner heliosphere, and it has been proposed that they give rise to microstreams and torsional Alfvén waves detected in situ in the solar wind. To predict and understand the signatures of coronal-hole jets, we have performed a detailed statistical analysis of such a jet simulated by an adaptively refined magnetohydrodynamics model. The results confirm the generation and persistence of three-dimensional, reconnection-driven magnetic turbulence in the simulation. We calculate the spatial correlations of magnetic fluctuations within the jet and find that they agree best with the Müller-Biskamp scaling model including intermittent current sheets of various sizes coupled via hydrodynamic turbulent cascade. The anisotropy of the magnetic fluctuations and the spatial orientation of the current sheets are consistent with an ensemble of nonlinear Alfvén waves. These properties also reflect the overall collimated jet structure imposed by the geometry of the reconnecting magnetic field. A comparison with Ulysses observations shows that turbulence in the jet wake is in quantitative agreement with that in the fast solar wind.

  10. THE ROLE OF TURBULENT MAGNETIC RECONNECTION IN THE FORMATION OF ROTATIONALLY SUPPORTED PROTOSTELLAR DISKS

    SciTech Connect

    Santos-Lima, R.; De Gouveia Dal Pino, E. M.; Lazarian, A.

    2012-03-01

    The formation of protostellar disks out of molecular cloud cores is still not fully understood. Under ideal MHD conditions, the removal of angular momentum from the disk progenitor by the typically embedded magnetic field may prevent the formation of a rotationally supported disk during the main protostellar accretion phase of low-mass stars. This has been known as the magnetic braking problem and the most investigated mechanism to alleviate this problem and help remove the excess of magnetic flux during the star formation process, the so-called ambipolar diffusion (AD), has been shown to be not sufficient to weaken the magnetic braking at least at this stage of the disk formation. In this work, motivated by recent progress in the understanding of magnetic reconnection in turbulent environments, we appeal to the diffusion of magnetic field mediated by magnetic reconnection as an alternative mechanism for removing magnetic flux. We investigate numerically this mechanism during the later phases of the protostellar disk formation and show its high efficiency. By means of fully three-dimensional MHD simulations, we show that the diffusivity arising from turbulent magnetic reconnection is able to transport magnetic flux to the outskirts of the disk progenitor at timescales compatible with the collapse, allowing the formation of a rotationally supported disk around the protostar of dimensions {approx}100 AU, with a nearly Keplerian profile in the early accretion phase. Since MHD turbulence is expected to be present in protostellar disks, this is a natural mechanism for removing magnetic flux excess and allowing the formation of these disks. This mechanism dismisses the necessity of postulating a hypothetical increase of the ohmic resistivity as discussed in the literature. Together with our earlier work which showed that magnetic flux removal from molecular cloud cores is very efficient, this work calls for reconsidering the relative role of AD in the processes of star

  11. Observation of Ion Acceleration and Heating during Collisionless Magnetic Reconnection in a Laboratory Plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Yoo, Jongsoo; Yamada, Masaaki; Ji, Hantao; Myers, Clayton E.

    2012-12-10

    The ion dynamics in a collisionless magnetic reconnection layer are studied in a laboratory plasma. The measured in-plane plasma potential profile, which is established by electrons accelerated around the electron diffusion region, shows a saddle-shaped structure that is wider and deeper towards the outflow direction. This potential structure ballistically accelerates ions near the separatrices toward the outflow direction. Ions are heated as they travel into the high pressure downstream region.

  12. Ion acceleration and heating by kinetic Alfvén waves associated with magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Ji; Lin, Yu; Johnson, Jay R.; Wang, Zheng-Xiong; Wang, Xueyi

    2017-10-01

    Our previous study on the generation and signatures of kinetic Alfvén waves (KAWs) associated with magnetic reconnection in a current sheet revealed that KAWs are a common feature during reconnection [Liang et al. J. Geophys. Res.: Space Phys. 121, 6526 (2016)]. In this paper, ion acceleration and heating by the KAWs generated during magnetic reconnection are investigated with a three-dimensional (3-D) hybrid model. It is found that in the outflow region, a fraction of inflow ions are accelerated by the KAWs generated in the leading bulge region of reconnection, and their parallel velocities gradually increase up to slightly super-Alfvénic. As a result of wave-particle interactions, an accelerated ion beam forms in the direction of the anti-parallel magnetic field, in addition to the core ion population, leading to the development of non-Maxwellian velocity distributions, which include a trapped population with parallel velocities consistent with the wave speed. The ions are heated in both parallel and perpendicular directions. In the parallel direction, the heating results from nonlinear Landau resonance of trapped ions. In the perpendicular direction, however, evidence of stochastic heating by the KAWs is found during the acceleration stage, with an increase of magnetic moment μ. The coherence in the perpendicular ion temperature T⊥ and the perpendicular electric and magnetic fields of KAWs also provides evidence for perpendicular heating by KAWs. The parallel and perpendicular heating of the accelerated beam occur simultaneously, leading to the development of temperature anisotropy with T⊥>T∥ . The heating rate agrees with the damping rate of the KAWs, and the heating is dominated by the accelerated ion beam. In the later stage, with the increase of the fraction of the accelerated ions, interaction between the accelerated beam and the core population also contributes to the ion heating, ultimately leading to overlap of the beams and an overall

  13. Ion acceleration and heating by kinetic Alfvén waves associated with magnetic reconnection

    DOE PAGES

    Liang, Ji; Lin, Yu; Johnson, Jay R.; ...

    2017-09-19

    In a previous study on the generation and signatures of kinetic Alfv en waves (KAWs) associated with magnetic reconnection in a current sheet revealed that KAWs are a common feature during reconnection [Liang et al. J. Geophys. Res.: Space Phys. 121, 6526 (2016)]. In this paper, ion acceleration and heating by the KAWs generated during magnetic reconnection are investigated with a three-dimensional (3-D) hybrid model. It is found that in the outflow region, a fraction of inflow ions are accelerated by the KAWs generated in the leading bulge region of reconnection, and their parallel velocities gradually increase up to slightly super-Alfv enic. As a result of waveparticle interactions, an accelerated ion beam forms in the direction of the anti-parallel magnetic field, in addition to the core ion population, leading to the development of non-Maxwellian velocity distributions, which include a trapped population with parallel velocities consistent with the wave speed. We then heat ions in both parallel and perpendicular directions. In the parallel direction, the heating results from nonlinear Landau resonance of trapped ions. In the perpendicular direction, however, evidence of stochastic heating by the KAWs is found during the acceleration stage, with an increase of magnetic moment μ. The coherence in the Tmore » $$\\perp$$ ion temperature and the perpendicular electric and magnetic fields of KAWs also provides evidence for perpendicular heating by KAWs. The parallel and perpendicular heating of the accelerated beam occur simultaneously, leading to the development of temperature anisotropy with the perpendicular temperature T$$\\perp$$>T$$\\parallel$$ temperature. The heating rate agrees with the damping rate of the KAWs, and the heating is dominated by the accelerated ion beam. In the later stage, with the increase of the fraction of the accelerated ions, interaction between the accelerated beam and the core population also contributes to the ion heating

  14. Flux Rope Formation and Self-Generated Turbulent Reconnection Driven by the Plasmoid Instability in the Heliosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharjee, A.; Huang, Y. M.

    2015-12-01

    It has been established that the Sweet-Parker current layer in high Lundquist number reconnection is unstable to the super-Alfvénic plasmoid instability. Past two-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic simulations have demonstrated that the plasmoid instability leads to a new regime where the Sweet-Parker current layer changes into a chain of plasmoids connected by secondary current sheets, and the averaged reconnection rate becomes nearly independent of the Lundquist number. In this work, three-dimensional simulations with a guide field shows that the additional degree of freedom allows plasmoid instabilities to grow at oblique angles. We present a scenario in which large-scale oblique tearing modes overlap with each other, break flux surfaces, and stir up a spectrum of smaller-scale tearing modes, leading eventually to self-generated turbulent reconnection. The averaged reconnection rate in the self-generated turbulent state is of the order of a hundredth of the characteristic Alfvén speed, which is similar to the two-dimensional result but is an order of magnitude lower than the fastest reconnection rate reported in recent studies of externally driven three-dimensional turbulent reconnection. Kinematic and magnetic energy fluctuations both form elongated eddies along the direction of local magnetic field, which is a signature of anisotropic magnetohydrodynamic turbulence. Both energy fluctuations satisfy power-law spectra in the inertial range. The anisotropy of turbulence eddies is found to be nearly scale-independent, in contrast with the prediction of the Goldreich-Sridhar (GS) theory for anisotropic turbulence in a homogeneous plasma permeated by a uniform magnetic field. The effect of varying the magnitude of the toroidal field on the critical balance condition underlying the GS theory is discussed.

  15. On the Distribution of Particle Acceleration Sites in Plasmoid-dominated Relativistic Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nalewajko, Krzysztof; Uzdensky, Dmitri A.; Cerutti, Benoît; Werner, Gregory R.; Begelman, Mitchell C.

    2015-12-01

    We investigate the distribution of particle acceleration sites, independently of the actual acceleration mechanism, during plasmoid-dominated, relativistic collisionless magnetic reconnection by analyzing the results of a particle-in-cell numerical simulation. The simulation is initiated with Harris-type current layers in pair plasma with no guide magnetic field, negligible radiative losses, no initial perturbation, and using periodic boundary conditions. We find that the plasmoids develop a robust internal structure, with colder dense cores and hotter outer shells, that is recovered after each plasmoid merger on a dynamical timescale. We use spacetime diagrams of the reconnection layers to probe the evolution of plasmoids, and in this context we investigate the individual particle histories for a representative sample of energetic electrons. We distinguish three classes of particle acceleration sites associated with (1) magnetic X-points, (2) regions between merging plasmoids, and (3) the trailing edges of accelerating plasmoids. We evaluate the contribution of each class of acceleration sites to the final energy distribution of energetic electrons: magnetic X-points dominate at moderate energies, and the regions between merging plasmoids dominate at higher energies. We also identify the dominant acceleration scenarios, in order of decreasing importance: (1) single acceleration between merging plasmoids, (2) single acceleration at a magnetic X-point, and (3) acceleration at a magnetic X-point followed by acceleration in a plasmoid. Particle acceleration is absent only in the vicinity of stationary plasmoids. The effect of magnetic mirrors due to plasmoid contraction does not appear to be significant in relativistic reconnection.

  16. ON THE DISTRIBUTION OF PARTICLE ACCELERATION SITES IN PLASMOID-DOMINATED RELATIVISTIC MAGNETIC RECONNECTION

    SciTech Connect

    Nalewajko, Krzysztof; Cerutti, Benoit; Begelman, Mitchell C.

    2015-12-20

    We investigate the distribution of particle acceleration sites, independently of the actual acceleration mechanism, during plasmoid-dominated, relativistic collisionless magnetic reconnection by analyzing the results of a particle-in-cell numerical simulation. The simulation is initiated with Harris-type current layers in pair plasma with no guide magnetic field, negligible radiative losses, no initial perturbation, and using periodic boundary conditions. We find that the plasmoids develop a robust internal structure, with colder dense cores and hotter outer shells, that is recovered after each plasmoid merger on a dynamical timescale. We use spacetime diagrams of the reconnection layers to probe the evolution of plasmoids, and in this context we investigate the individual particle histories for a representative sample of energetic electrons. We distinguish three classes of particle acceleration sites associated with (1) magnetic X-points, (2) regions between merging plasmoids, and (3) the trailing edges of accelerating plasmoids. We evaluate the contribution of each class of acceleration sites to the final energy distribution of energetic electrons: magnetic X-points dominate at moderate energies, and the regions between merging plasmoids dominate at higher energies. We also identify the dominant acceleration scenarios, in order of decreasing importance: (1) single acceleration between merging plasmoids, (2) single acceleration at a magnetic X-point, and (3) acceleration at a magnetic X-point followed by acceleration in a plasmoid. Particle acceleration is absent only in the vicinity of stationary plasmoids. The effect of magnetic mirrors due to plasmoid contraction does not appear to be significant in relativistic reconnection.

  17. Particle acceleration in solar flares: merging magnetic islands in forced reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Potter, Max; Browning, Philippa; Gordovskyy, Mykola

    2017-04-01

    There are many proposed mechanisms for particle acceleration in flares, but no single model is able to fully reproduce the range of observed spectra and fluxes from solar flares. It is therefore likely that there are multiple acceleration mechanisms operating as part of a multi-stage process. Forced magnetic reconnection requires an external process as a trigger and thus operates as part of a chain of perturbative processes in the plasma. Furthermore, many studies of particle acceleration deal with steady reconnection, yet this is unlike the conditions in flares, which are transient event. Forced reconnection has three stages: perturbation to the equilibrium, initial reconnection to form a chain of magnetic islands, and finally the islands begin to coalesce and form 'monster' islands. Previous studies of magnetic energy release and particle acceleration in flares have considered only the first two stages, but we now incorporate also coalescence. This study is also concerned with the relationship between the nature of the perturbation and the dynamics and energetics of the MHD fields. As such, the effects of sinusoid, multiple sinusoid and localised (Gaussian) perturbations of varying amplitude are considered, thereby building towards more realistic models. To this end, we utilise 2D MHD simulations of forced magnetic reconnection using Lare2d with anomalous resistivity, and a long, periodic simulation domain which allows islands to move and coalesce. Test particles are introduced using a guiding centre approximation code, allowing us to predict the energy spectra of non-thermal ions and electrons, as well as the spatial distributions and evolution on non-thermal particle populations in time-evolving fields.

  18. Study of Lower Hybrid Frequency Turbulence in the Magnetic Reconnection Experiment (MRX)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dorfman, S. E.; Ji, H.; Roytershteyn, V.; Yamada, M.; Daughton, W. S.; Yoo, J.; Oz, E.; Tharp, T.; Lawrence, E. E.; Myers, C.

    2010-12-01

    One of the key open questions in magnetic reconnection is the nature of the mechanism that governs the reconnection rate in real astrophysical and laboratory systems. Comparisons between fully kinetic 2-D simulations of the Magnetic Reconnection Experiment (MRX) and experimental data indicate that three-dimensional dynamics, such as current layer disruptions recently observed in MRX, may play a key role in resolving an important discrepancy in the reconnection rate and layer width [1,2,3]. These disruptions are often associated with fluctuations in the lower hybrid frequency range and a rapid local reconnection rate. Fluctuations are observed not only in MRX [4], but also in space [5] and 3-D kinetic simulations. Comparison of fluctuation characteristics between the three domains may shed light on the underlying physics. In both the simulation and the experiments, the fluctuations are related to density gradients across the layer. The frequency range is similarly broadband up to the lower hybrid range, and the phase velocities are comparable in appropriately normalized units. However, while the electron drift speed is comparable to the phase velocity at the layer center in the experiment (consistent with previous MRX results [4]), the drift speed in the simulations is considerably larger. Furthermore, the fluctuations observed in the experiment are fully turbulent with correlation lengths the same order as the wavelength while those observed in the simulations and in space are more coherent. Some discharges also display "O-point" signatures consistent with magnetic island like structures. The present research explores the relationship between the disruptions and fluctuations in the context of the reconnection rate problem. Experiments are ongoing to determine what physics is responsible for the broader current layers (and correspondingly smaller drift speeds) observed in the experiment. [1] Y. Ren, et al., Phys. Plasmas 15, 082113 (2008). [2] S. Dorfman, et al

  19. Electron acceleration in collisionless shocks and magnetic reconnection by laser-produced plasma ablation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Jaehong; Spitkovksy, Anatoly; Fox, Will; Bhattacharjee, Amitava

    2016-10-01

    We perform particle-in-cell simulations of collisionless shocks and magnetic reconnection generated by ablated plasma expanding into a magnetized background plasma. We find: (1) The simulated proton radiography produces different morphology of the shock structure depending on the orientation of the magnetic field and can be used to identify a shock in the experiment. Electrons are accelerated by the whistler waves generated at oblique sites of the shock. (2) Forced collisionless magnetic reconnection is induced when the expanding plumes carry opposite magnetic polarities and interact with a background plasma. Electrons are accelerated at the reconnection X line and reveal a power-law distribution as the plasma beta is lowered, β = 0.08 . As the plasma beta is increased, β = 0.32 , the 1st order Fermi mechanism against the two plasma plumes contributes to the electron acceleration as well as the X line acceleration. Using 3-D simulations, we also explore the effect of 3-D instabilities (Weibel instability or drift-kink) on particle acceleration and magnetic field annihilation between the colliding magnetized plumes

  20. Multiscale Auroral Emission Statistics as Evidence of Turbulent Reconnection in Earth's Midtail Plasma Sheet

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klimas, Alex; Uritsky, Vadim; Donovan, Eric

    2010-01-01

    We provide indirect evidence for turbulent reconnection in Earth's midtail plasma sheet by reexamining the statistical properties of bright, nightside auroral emission events as observed by the UVI experiment on the Polar spacecraft and discussed previously by Uritsky et al. The events are divided into two groups: (1) those that map to absolute value of (X(sub GSM)) < 12 R(sub E) in the magnetotail and do not show scale-free statistics and (2) those that map to absolute value of (X(sub GSM)) > 12 R(sub E) and do show scale-free statistics. The absolute value of (X(sub GSM)) dependence is shown to most effectively organize the events into these two groups. Power law exponents obtained for group 2 are shown to validate the conclusions of Uritsky et al. concerning the existence of critical dynamics in the auroral emissions. It is suggested that the auroral dynamics is a reflection of a critical state in the magnetotail that is based on the dynamics of turbulent reconnection in the midtail plasma sheet.

  1. Multiscale Auroral Emission Statistics as Evidence of Turbulent Reconnection in Earth's Midtail Plasma Sheet

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klimas, Alex; Uritsky, Vadim; Donovan, Eric

    2010-01-01

    We provide indirect evidence for turbulent reconnection in Earth's midtail plasma sheet by reexamining the statistical properties of bright, nightside auroral emission events as observed by the UVI experiment on the Polar spacecraft and discussed previously by Uritsky et al. The events are divided into two groups: (1) those that map to absolute value of (X(sub GSM)) < 12 R(sub E) in the magnetotail and do not show scale-free statistics and (2) those that map to absolute value of (X(sub GSM)) > 12 R(sub E) and do show scale-free statistics. The absolute value of (X(sub GSM)) dependence is shown to most effectively organize the events into these two groups. Power law exponents obtained for group 2 are shown to validate the conclusions of Uritsky et al. concerning the existence of critical dynamics in the auroral emissions. It is suggested that the auroral dynamics is a reflection of a critical state in the magnetotail that is based on the dynamics of turbulent reconnection in the midtail plasma sheet.

  2. Spontaneous magnetic reconnection. Collisionless reconnection and its potential astrophysical relevance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Treumann, R. A.; Baumjohann, W.

    2015-10-01

    The present review concerns the relevance of collisionless reconnection in the astrophysical context. Emphasis is put on recent developments in theory obtained from collisionless numerical simulations in two and three dimensions. It is stressed that magnetic reconnection is a universal process of particular importance under collisionless conditions, when both collisional and anomalous dissipation are irrelevant. While collisional (resistive) reconnection is a slow, diffusive process, collisionless reconnection is spontaneous. On any astrophysical time scale, it is explosive. It sets on when electric current widths become comparable to the leptonic inertial length in the so-called lepton (electron/positron) "diffusion region", where leptons de-magnetise. Here, the magnetic field contacts its oppositely directed partner and annihilates. Spontaneous reconnection breaks the original magnetic symmetry, violently releases the stored free energy of the electric current, and causes plasma heating and particle acceleration. Ultimately, the released energy is provided by mechanical motion of either the two colliding magnetised plasmas that generate the current sheet or the internal turbulence cascading down to lepton-scale current filaments. Spontaneous reconnection in such extended current sheets that separate two colliding plasmas results in the generation of many reconnection sites (tearing modes) distributed over the current surface, each consisting of lepton exhausts and jets which are separated by plasmoids. Volume-filling factors of reconnection sites are estimated to be as large as {<}10^{-5} per current sheet. Lepton currents inside exhausts may be strong enough to excite Buneman and, for large thermal pressure anisotropy, also Weibel instabilities. They bifurcate and break off into many small-scale current filaments and magnetic flux ropes exhibiting turbulent magnetic power spectra of very flat power-law shape W_b∝ k^{-α } in wavenumber k with power becoming as

  3. Kinetic turbulence and non-thermal particle acceleration in relativistically hot plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhdankin, Vladimir; Werner, Gregory; Uzdensky, Dmitri

    2016-10-01

    We describe particle-in-cell numerical simulations of driven turbulence in collisionless, relativistically hot pair plasma. We initialize each simulation as a thermal bath, which is disrupted by the driving to develop turbulent fluctuations across a broad range of scales. We measure the energy spectra at fluid scales and at sub-Larmor scales, showing them to be consistent with a magnetohydrodynamic cascade and phase-space cascade, respectively. We demonstrate that a non-thermal particle distribution develops across a broad range of energies, with a late-time power-law index that decreases with increasing magnetization (decreasing plasma beta), much like in similar studies of magnetic reconnection. We suggest that turbulence may a ubiquitous and versatile mechanism of non-thermal particle acceleration in high energy astrophysical systems such as pulsar wind nebulae.

  4. Hinode X-ray Telescope (XRT): Particle Acceleration at Magnetic Reconnection Sites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Korreck, Kelly E.; SAO XRT Team

    2007-05-01

    Reconnection events on the Sun cause explosive flares. These events are monitored by a host of satellite instruments, one of the newest being the XRT on Hinode. With a high cadence and 1 arcsecond resolution, the XRT can be used to help shed light on unresolved magnetic reconnection topics such as particle acceleration associated with reconnection and the subsequent outflows. We examine the flares seen thus far with XRT and study the associated temporal and size scale as well as the magnetic flux density to compare with previous work done with Yohkoh SRT/HRT. In addition, complimentary data from TRACE, RHESSI and other solar satellites are used to better parameterize the reconnection sites and the associated particle acceleration. The US XRT team is supported by a contract from NASA to SAO. Hinode is an international project supported by JAXA, NASA, PPARC and ESA. We are grateful to the Hinode team for all their efforts in the design, development and operation of the mission.

  5. Non-linear growth of double tearing mode: Explosive reconnection, plasmoid formation, and particle acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akramov, Tohir; Baty, Hubert

    2017-08-01

    The nonlinear evolution of double tearing modes (DTMs) is investigated within the framework of resistive magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) simulations in a two-dimensional Cartesian geometry. We have explored the explosive reconnection phase associated with the growth of the secondary structure-driven instability for a range of resistivity values. The time scale of the explosive phase (that is of order of a few Alfvénic time scales) is shown to be quasi-independent of the resistivity, even when fast growing plasmoids develop for the highest enough Lundquist number cases. Test particle accelerations are performed using the MHD explosive simulations as input parameters. Our results show that reconnection DTM dynamics is able to provide an efficient process for accelerating charged particles far beyond characteristic thermal velocities within the reconnection layers. The main acceleration mechanism is attributed to the strong inductive electric field generated by the island structure-driven instability, with an additional smaller contribution due to the presence of plasmoids. Finally, our results are used to discuss some features of the accelerated particle spectra during flaring activity in the solar corona.

  6. Turbulent Magnetohydrodynamic Acceleration Processes: Theory SSX Experiments and Connections to Space and Astrophysics

    SciTech Connect

    W Matthaeus; M Brown

    2006-07-15

    This is the final technical report for a funded program to provide theoretical support to the Swarthmore Spheromak Experiment. We examined mhd relaxation, reconnecton between two spheromaks, particle acceleration by these processes, and collisonless effects, e.g., Hall effect near the reconnection zone,. Throughout the project, applications to space plasma physics and astrophysics were included. Towards the end ofthe project we were examining a more fully turbulent relaxation associated with unconstrained dynamics in SSX. We employed experimental, spacecraft observations, analytical and numerical methods.

  7. Observational and Theoretical Challenges to Wave or Turbulence Accelerations of the Fast Solar Wind

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, D. Aaron

    2008-01-01

    We use both observations and theoretical considerations to show that hydromagnetic waves or turbulence cannot produce the acceleration of the fast solar wind and the related heating of the open solar corona. Waves do exist as shown by Hinode and other observations, and can play a role in the differential heating and acceleration of minor ions but their amplitudes are not sufficient to power the wind, as demonstrated by extrapolation of magnetic spectra from Helios and Ulysses observations. Dissipation mechanisms invoked to circumvent this conclusion cannot be effective for a variety of reasons. In particular, turbulence does not play a strong role in the corona as shown by both eclipse observations of coronal striations and theoretical considerations of line-tying to a nonturbulent photosphere, nonlocality of interactions, and the nature of kinetic dissipation. In the absence of wave heating and acceleration, the chromosphere and transition region become the natural source of open coronal energization. We suggest a variant of the velocity filtration approach in which the emergence and complex churning of the magnetic flux in the chromosphere and transition region continuously and ubiquitously produces the nonthermal distributions required. These particles are then released by magnetic carpet reconnection at a wide range of scales and produce the wind as described in kinetic approaches. Since the carpet reconnection is not the main source of the energization of the plasma, there is no expectation of an observable release of energy in nanoflares.

  8. Observational and Theoretical Challenges to Wave or Turbulence Accelerations of the Fast Solar Wind

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, D. Aaron

    2008-01-01

    We use both observations and theoretical considerations to show that hydromagnetic waves or turbulence cannot produce the acceleration of the fast solar wind and the related heating of the open solar corona. Waves do exist as shown by Hinode and other observations, and can play a role in the differential heating and acceleration of minor ions but their amplitudes are not sufficient to power the wind, as demonstrated by extrapolation of magnetic spectra from Helios and Ulysses observations. Dissipation mechanisms invoked to circumvent this conclusion cannot be effective for a variety of reasons. In particular, turbulence does not play a strong role in the corona as shown by both eclipse observations of coronal striations and theoretical considerations of line-tying to a nonturbulent photosphere, nonlocality of interactions, and the nature of kinetic dissipation. In the absence of wave heating and acceleration, the chromosphere and transition region become the natural source of open coronal energization. We suggest a variant of the velocity filtration approach in which the emergence and complex churning of the magnetic flux in the chromosphere and transition region continuously and ubiquitously produces the nonthermal distributions required. These particles are then released by magnetic carpet reconnection at a wide range of scales and produce the wind as described in kinetic approaches. Since the carpet reconnection is not the main source of the energization of the plasma, there is no expectation of an observable release of energy in nanoflares.

  9. ELECTRON HEATING AND ACCELERATION BY MAGNETIC RECONNECTION IN HOT ACCRETION FLOWS

    SciTech Connect

    Ding Jian; Yuan Feng; Liang, Edison

    2010-01-10

    Both analytical and numerical works show that magnetic reconnection must occur in hot accretion flows. This process will effectively heat and accelerate electrons. In this paper, we use the numerical hybrid simulation of magnetic reconnection plus the test-electron method to investigate the electron acceleration and heating due to magnetic reconnection in hot accretion flows. We consider fiducial values of density, temperature, and magnetic parameter beta{sub e} (defined as the ratio of the electron pressure to the magnetic pressure) of the accretion flow as n{sub 0} approx 10{sup 6} cm{sup -3}, T {sup 0}{sub e} approx 2 x 10{sup 9} K, and beta{sub e} = 1. We find that electrons are heated to a higher temperature T{sub e} = 5 x 10{sup 9} K, and a fraction eta approx 8% of electrons are accelerated into a broken power-law distribution, dN(gamma) propor to gamma{sup -p}, with p approx 1.5 and 4 below and above approx1 MeV, respectively. We also investigate the effect of varying beta and n{sub 0}. We find that when beta{sub e} is smaller or n{sub 0} is larger, i.e., the magnetic field is stronger, T{sub e} , eta, and p all become larger.

  10. Does Flare Reconnection Occur Before or After Explosive Coronal Mass Ejection Acceleration?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guidoni, Silvina E.; Karpen, Judith T.; DeVore, C. R.; Qiu, Jiong

    2015-04-01

    The mechanism for producing fast coronal mass ejections/eruptive flares (CME/EFs) is hotly debated. Most models rely on ideal instability/loss of equilibrium or magnetic reconnection; these two categories of models predict different causal relationships between CMEs and flares. In both cases, flare reconnection disconnects the bulk of the CME from the Sun, but in the former models, flare reconnection onset is a consequence of the fast outward motion of the CME while in the later models reconnection is what causes the CME acceleration. Discriminating between these models requires continuous, high-cadence observations and state-of-the-art numerical simulations that enable the relative timing of key stages in the events to be determined. With the advent of SDO, STEREO, and massively parallel supercomputers, we are well poised to tackle this major challenge to our understanding of solar activity. In recent work (Karpen et al. 2012), we determined the timing and location of triggering mechanisms for the breakout initiation model (Antiochos et al. 1999), using ultra-high-resolution magnetohydrodynamic simulations with adaptive mesh refinement and high-cadence analysis. This approach enabled us to resolve as finely as possible the small scales of magnetic reconnection and island formation in the current sheets, within the global context of a large-scale solar eruption. We found that the explosive acceleration of the fast CME occurs only after the onset of rapid reconnection at the flare current sheet formed in the wake of the rising CME flux rope. In the present work, we compare flare reconnection rates, measured from flare ribbon UV brightenings observed by SDO/AIA and magnetograms from SDO/HMI, with the height evolution of CME fronts and cores, measured from STEREO/SECCHI EUV and coronagraph images. We also calculate these quantities from numerical simulations and compare them to observations, as a new test of the breakout initiation model. This work was supported by

  11. A FLUX ROPE NETWORK AND PARTICLE ACCELERATION IN THREE-DIMENSIONAL RELATIVISTIC MAGNETIC RECONNECTION

    SciTech Connect

    Kagan, Daniel; Milosavljevic, Milos; Spitkovsky, Anatoly

    2013-09-01

    We investigate magnetic reconnection and particle acceleration in relativistic pair plasmas with three-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations of a kinetic-scale current sheet in a periodic geometry. We include a guide field that introduces an inclination between the reconnecting field lines and explore outside-of-the-current sheet magnetizations that are significantly below those considered by other authors carrying out similar calculations. Thus, our simulations probe the transitional regime in which the magnetic and plasma pressures are of the same order of magnitude. The tearing instability is the dominant mode in the current sheet for all guide field strengths, while the linear kink mode is less important even without the guide field, except in the lower magnetization case. Oblique modes seem to be suppressed entirely. In its nonlinear evolution, the reconnection layer develops a network of interconnected and interacting magnetic flux ropes. As smaller flux ropes merge into larger ones, the reconnection layer evolves toward a three-dimensional, disordered state in which the resulting flux rope segments contain magnetic substructure on plasma skin depth scales. Embedded in the flux ropes, we detect spatially and temporally intermittent sites of dissipation reflected in peaks in the parallel electric field. Magnetic dissipation and particle acceleration persist until the end of the simulations, with simulations with higher magnetization and lower guide field strength exhibiting greater and faster energy conversion and particle energization. At the end of our largest simulation, the particle energy spectrum attains a tail extending to high Lorentz factors that is best modeled with a combination of two additional thermal components. We confirm that the primary energization mechanism is acceleration by the electric field in the X-line region. The highest-energy positrons (electrons) are moderately beamed with median angles {approx}30 Degree-Sign -40 Degree

  12. The extent of non-thermal particle acceleration in relativistic, electron-positron reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Werner, Greg; Guo, Fan

    2015-07-21

    Reconnection is studied as an explanation for high-energy flares from the Crab Nebula. The production of synchrotron emission >100 MeV challenges classical models of acceleration. 3D simulation shows that reconnection, converting magnetic energy to kinetic energy, can accelerate beyond γrad. The power-law index and high-energy cutoff are important for understanding the radiation spectrum dN/dγ = f(γ) ∝ γ. α and cutoff were measured vs. L and σ, where L is system (simulation) size and σ is upstream magnetization (σ = B2/4πnmc2). α can affect the high-energy cutoff. In conclusion, for collisionless relativistic reconnection in electron-positron plasma, without guide field, nb/nd=0.1: (1) relativistic magnetic reconnection yields power-law particle spectra, (2) the power law index decreases as σ increases, approaching ≈1.2. (3) the power law is cut off at an energy related to acceleration within a single current layer, which is proportional to the current layer length (for small systems, that length is the system length, yielding γc2 ≈ 0.1 L/ρ0; for large systems, the layer length is limited by secondary tearing instability, yielding γc1 ≈ 4σ; the transition from small to large is around L/ρ0 = 40σ.). (4) although the large-system energy cutoff is proportional to the average energy per particle, it is significantly higher than the average energy per particle.

  13. Electron acceleration in three-dimensional magnetic reconnection with a guide field

    SciTech Connect

    Dahlin, J. T. Swisdak, M.; Drake, J. F.

    2015-10-15

    Kinetic simulations of 3D collisionless magnetic reconnection with a guide field show a dramatic enhancement of energetic electron production when compared with 2D systems. In the 2D systems, electrons are trapped in magnetic islands that limit their energy gain, whereas in the 3D systems the filamentation of the current layer leads to a stochastic magnetic field that enables the electrons to access volume-filling acceleration regions. The dominant accelerator of the most energetic electrons is a Fermi-like mechanism associated with reflection of charged particles from contracting field lines.

  14. Waves and electron acceleration in the separatrix regions of magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujimoto, Keizo

    dominant in the inflow side of the separatrices. The waves are generated mainly due to the electron beams that constitute the Hall current. The relatively weak beams before strong acceleration trigger the Buneman instability which results in the waves with a frequency of the lower hybrid range. The strong acceleration occurs along the field line due to a localized potential hump and causes the density cavity. The intense electron beams excite the electron two-stream instability and the beam driven whistler instability. The former mode gives the Langmuir waves and the flat-top electron distributions in the parallel direction, both of which have been observed frequently in the Earth's magnetotail. The latter mode, on the other hand, scatters the electrons in the perpendicular direction, forming isotropic distribution with non-thermal high-energy tail. Both the Buneman and electron two-stream instabilities evolve the ESWs in the nonlinear phases. In this paper, we present the generation mechanisms of the waves around the separatrices and their roles in magnetic reconnection. The mechanism of the intense electron acceleration along the field line will be discussed.

  15. Particle acceleration in three-dimensional reconnection of flux-tube disconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akbari, Z.; Hosseinpour, M.; Mohammadi, M. A.

    2016-11-01

    "Flux-tube disconnection" is a type of steady-state three-dimensional magnetic reconnection with O-point at the origin of the resistive diffusion region. Magnetic reconnection is accepted as a potential mechanism for particle acceleration in astrophysical and space plasmas, especially in solar flares. By using the static magnetic and electric fields for flux-tube disconnection, features of test particle acceleration with input parameters for the solar corona are investigated. We show that a proton injected close to origin of the diffusion region can be accelerated to a very high kinetic energy along the magnetic field lines. The efficient acceleration takes place at the radial point where the electric drift velocity has its maximum magnitude. However, a proton injected at radial distances far away from the origin is not accelerated efficiently and even may be trapped in the field lines. The final kinetic energy of the particle depends significantly on the amplitude of the electric field rather than the amplitude of magnetic field.

  16. Collisionless Magnetic Reconnection as an Ion Acceleration Mechanism of Low- β Laboratory Plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cazzola, Emanuele; Curreli, Davide; Lapenta, Giovanni

    2016-10-01

    In this work we present the results from a series of fully-kinetic simulations of magnetic reconnection under typical laboratory plasma conditions. The highly-efficient energy conversion obtained from this process is of great interest for applications such as future electric propulsion systems and ion beam accelerators. We analysed initial configurations in low-beta conditions with reduced mass ratio of mi = 512me at magnetic fields between 200G and 5000G and electron temperatures between 0.5 and 10eV. The initial ion density and temperature are kept uniform and equal to 1019 m-3 and 0.0215eV (room temperature) respectively. The analysis has shown that the reconnection process under these conditions can accelerate ions up to velocities as high as a significant fraction of the inflow Alfven speed. The configuration showing the best scenario is further studied with a realistic mass ratio in terms of energetics and outflow ion momentum, with the latter featured by the traditionally used specific impulse. Finally, a more detailed analysis of the reconnection outflow has revealed the formation of different interesting set of shock structures, also recently seen from MHD simulations of relativistic plasmas and certainly subject of future more careful attention. The present work has been possible thanks to the Illinois-KULeuven Faculty/PhD Candidate Exchange Program. Computational resources provided by the PRACE Tier-0 machines.

  17. Particle Acceleration during Magnetic Reconnection in a Low-beta Plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Xiaocan; Guo, Fan; Li, Hui; Li, Gang

    2017-07-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a primary mechanism for particle energization in space and astrophysical plasmas. By carrying out two-dimensional (2D) fully kinetic simulations, we study particle acceleration during magnetic reconnection in plasmas with different plasma β (the ratio between the thermal pressure and the magnetic pressure). For the high-β cases, we do not observe significant particle acceleration. In the low-β regime (β < 0.1), we find that reconnection is efficient at energizing both electrons and ions. While the distribution of accelerated particles integrated over the whole simulation box appears highly non-thermal, it is actually the superposition of a series of distributions in different sectors of a 2D magnetic island. Each of those distributions has only a small non-thermal component compared with its thermal core. By tracking a large number of particles, we show that particles get energized in X-line regions, contracting magnetic islands, and magnetic island coalescence regions. We obtain the particle energization rate {\\boldsymbol{j}}\\cdot {\\boldsymbol{E}} by averaging over particle drift motions and find that it agrees well with the particle kinetic energy change. We quantify the contribution of curvature drift, gradient drift, polarization drift, magnetization, non-gyrotropic effect, and parallel electric field in different acceleration regions. We find that the major energization is due to particle curvature drift along the motional electric field. The other particle motions contribute less but may become important in different acceleration regions. The highly efficient particle energization in low-β plasmas may help us understand the strong particle energization in solar flares and accretion disk coronae.

  18. Accelerated flows at Jupiter's magnetopause: Evidence for magnetic reconnection along the dawn flank

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ebert, R. W.; Allegrini, F.; Bagenal, F.; Bolton, S. J.; Connerney, J. E. P.; Clark, G.; DiBraccio, G. A.; Gershman, D. J.; Kurth, W. S.; Levin, S.; Louarn, P.; Mauk, B. H.; McComas, D. J.; Reno, M.; Szalay, J. R.; Thomsen, M. F.; Valek, P.; Weidner, S.; Wilson, R. J.

    2017-05-01

    We report on plasma and magnetic field observations from Juno's Jovian Auroral Distributions Experiment and Magnetic Field Investigation at 18 magnetopause crossings when the spacecraft was located at 6 h magnetic local time and 73-114 Jovian radii from Jupiter. Several crossings showed evidence of plasma energization, accelerated ion flows, and large magnetic shear angles, each representing a signature of magnetic reconnection. These signatures were observed for times when the magnetosphere was in both compressed and expanded states. We compared the flow change magnitudes to a simplified Walén relation and found 60% of the events to be 110% or less of the predicted values. Close examination of two magnetopause encounters revealed characteristics of a rotational discontinuity and an open magnetopause. These observations provide compelling evidence that magnetic reconnection can occur at Jupiter's dawn magnetopause and should be incorporated into theories of solar wind coupling and outer magnetosphere dynamics at Jupiter.

  19. The role of Magnetic Reconnection in Compact Sources and Jet Acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, Chandra Bahadur; De Gouveia Dal Pino, Elisabete; Kadowaki, Luis H. S.

    Almost a decade ago de Gouveia Dal Pino and Lazarian (2005) proposed a model for producing jet plasmons and particle acceleration by magnetic reconnection events in the surrounds of accretion disks around black holes with magnetospheres. Although this model predicts that the amount of magnetic power released by reconnection is more than sufficient to explain observed flares from black hole mass sources in different scales (from microquasars to low luminous active galactic nuclei; see de Gouveia Dal Pino et al. 2010), it still requires refinement and numerical testing. In this work, we take into account relativistic effects by introducing a Pseudo Newtonian approach to the model and also present the results of 2D MHD numerical simulations under this approach.

  20. SMALL-SCALE LOCAL PHENOMENA RELATED TO THE MAGNETIC RECONNECTION AND TURBULENCE IN THE PROXIMITY OF THE HELIOPAUSE

    SciTech Connect

    Strumik, M.; Czechowski, A.; Grzedzielski, S.; Macek, W. M.; Ratkiewicz, R.

    2013-08-20

    We study processes related to magnetic reconnection and plasma turbulence occurring in the presence of the heliopause (HP) and the heliospheric current sheet. It is shown that the interaction of plasmoids initiated by magnetic reconnection may provide connections between the inner and outer heliosheath and lead to an exchange of particles between the interstellar medium and the solar wind plasma shocked at the heliospheric termination shock. The magnetic reconnection may also cause plasma density and magnetic field compressions in the proximity of the HP. We argue that these phenomena could possibly be detected by the Voyager spacecraft approaching and crossing the HP. These results could clarify the concepts of the ''magnetic highway'' and the ''heliosheath depletion region'' recently proposed to explain recent Voyager 1 observations.

  1. A Kinetic Transport Theory for Particle Acceleration and Transport in Regions of Multiple Contracting and Reconnecting Inertial-scale Flux Ropes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    le Roux, J. A.; Zank, G. P.; Webb, G. M.; Khabarova, O.

    2015-03-01

    Simulations of particle acceleration in turbulent plasma regions with multiple contracting and merging (reconnecting) magnetic islands emphasize the key role of temporary particle trapping in island structures for the efficient acceleration of particles to form hard power-law spectra. Statistical kinetic transport theories have been developed that capture the essential physics of particle acceleration in multi-island regions. The transport theory of Zank et al. is further developed by considering the acceleration effects of both the mean and the variance of the electric fields induced by the dynamics of multiple inertial-scale flux ropes. A focused transport equation is derived that includes new Fokker-Planck terms for particle scattering and stochastic acceleration due to the variance in multiple flux-rope magnetic fields, plasma flows, and reconnection electric fields. A Parker transport equation is also derived in which a new expression for momentum diffusion appears, combining stochastic acceleration by particle scattering in the mean multi-flux-rope electric fields with acceleration by the variance in these electric fields. Test particle acceleration is modeled analytically considering drift acceleration by the variance in the induced electric fields of flux ropes in the slow supersonic, radially expanding solar wind. Hard power-law spectra occur for sufficiently strong inertial-scale flux ropes with an index modified by adiabatic cooling, solar wind advection, and diffusive escape from flux ropes. Flux ropes might be sufficiently strong behind interplanetary shocks where the index of suprathermal ion power-law spectra observed in the supersonic solar wind can be reproduced.

  2. A KINETIC TRANSPORT THEORY FOR PARTICLE ACCELERATION AND TRANSPORT IN REGIONS OF MULTIPLE CONTRACTING AND RECONNECTING INERTIAL-SCALE FLUX ROPES

    SciTech Connect

    Le Roux, J. A.; Zank, G. P.; Webb, G. M.; Khabarova, O.

    2015-03-10

    Simulations of particle acceleration in turbulent plasma regions with multiple contracting and merging (reconnecting) magnetic islands emphasize the key role of temporary particle trapping in island structures for the efficient acceleration of particles to form hard power-law spectra. Statistical kinetic transport theories have been developed that capture the essential physics of particle acceleration in multi-island regions. The transport theory of Zank et al. is further developed by considering the acceleration effects of both the mean and the variance of the electric fields induced by the dynamics of multiple inertial-scale flux ropes. A focused transport equation is derived that includes new Fokker-Planck terms for particle scattering and stochastic acceleration due to the variance in multiple flux-rope magnetic fields, plasma flows, and reconnection electric fields. A Parker transport equation is also derived in which a new expression for momentum diffusion appears, combining stochastic acceleration by particle scattering in the mean multi-flux-rope electric fields with acceleration by the variance in these electric fields. Test particle acceleration is modeled analytically considering drift acceleration by the variance in the induced electric fields of flux ropes in the slow supersonic, radially expanding solar wind. Hard power-law spectra occur for sufficiently strong inertial-scale flux ropes with an index modified by adiabatic cooling, solar wind advection, and diffusive escape from flux ropes. Flux ropes might be sufficiently strong behind interplanetary shocks where the index of suprathermal ion power-law spectra observed in the supersonic solar wind can be reproduced.

  3. Onset of Flare Reconnection and Coronal Mass Ejection Acceleration in Eruptive Events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guidoni, S. E.; Karpen, J. T.; DeVore, C. R.; Qiu, J.

    2014-12-01

    The mechanism for producing fast coronal mass ejections/eruptive flares (CME/EFs) is hotly debated. Most models rely on ideal instability/loss of equilibrium or magnetic reconnection; these two categories of models predict different relationships between CMEs and flares. Discriminating between them requires continuous, high-resolution observations and state-of-the-art numerical simulations that enable the relative timing of key stages in the events to be determined. With the advent of SDO, STEREO, and massively parallel supercomputers, we are well poised to tackle this major challenge to our understanding of solar activity. In recent work (Karpen et al. 2012), we determined the timing and location of triggering mechanisms for the breakout initiation model (Antiochos et al. 1999), using ultra-high-resolution magnetohydrodynamic simulations with adaptive mesh refinement and high-cadence analysis. This approach enabled us to resolve as finely as possible the small scales of magnetic reconnection and island formation in the current sheets, within the global context of a large-scale solar eruption. We found that the explosive acceleration of the fast CME occurs only after the onset of rapid reconnection at the flare current sheet formed in the wake of the rising CME flux rope. In the present work, we discriminate between ideal and resistive mechanisms for fast CME/EFs using a combination of state-of-the-art observations and simulations. We compare flare reconnection rates, measured from flare ribbon UV brightenings observed by SDO/AIA and magnetograms from SDO/HMI, with the height evolution of CME fronts and cores, measured from STEREO/SECCHI EUV and coronagraph images. We also calculate these quantities from numerical simulations and compare them to observations, as a new test of the breakout initiation model.

  4. Investigations of turbulent motions and particle acceleration in solar flares

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jakimiec, J.; Fludra, A.; Lemen, J. R.; Dennis, B. R.; Sylwester, J.

    1986-01-01

    Investigations of X-raya spectra of solar flares show that intense random (turbulent) motions are present in hot flare plasma. Here it is argued that the turbulent motions are of great importance for flare development. They can efficiently enhance flare energy release and accelerate particles to high energies.

  5. Turbulent acceleration and heating in toroidal magnetized plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garbet, X.; Esteve, D.; Sarazin, Y.; Abiteboul, J.; Bourdelle, C.; Dif-Pradalier, G.; Ghendrih, P.; Grandgirard, V.; Latu, G.; Smolyakov, A.

    2013-07-01

    It is shown that turbulence is responsible for a source of momentum, which cannot be recast as a divergence of a momentum flux. This process is similar to turbulent heating, with similar properties. The sum over all species vanishes up to polarization contributions. Hence, toroidal momentum is transferred from species to species, mediated by turbulence. As for momentum flux, symmetry breaking is needed. Flow shear is investigated as a source of symmetry breaking, leading to a source of momentum proportional to the shear rate. Turbulent acceleration is significant for ion species. It is found that it is proportional to the charge number Z, while turbulent heating scales as Z2/A, where A is the mass number. It is maximum in the edge, where the E × B flow shear rate and turbulence intensity are maximum. When both are large enough, the turbulent torque may overcome the collisional friction between impurities and main ions, thus leading to different toroidal velocities.

  6. Kinetic Modeling of Radiative Turbulence in Relativistic Astrophysical Plasmas: Particle Acceleration and High-Energy Flares

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uzdensky, Dmitri

    Relativistic astrophysical plasma environments routinely produce intense high-energy emission, which is often observed to be nonthermal and rapidly flaring. The recently discovered gamma-ray (> 100 MeV) flares in Crab Pulsar Wind Nebula (PWN) provide a quintessential illustration of this, but other notable examples include relativistic active galactic nuclei (AGN) jets, including blazars, and Gamma-ray Bursts (GRBs). Understanding the processes responsible for the very efficient and rapid relativistic particle acceleration and subsequent emission that occurs in these sources poses a strong challenge to modern high-energy astrophysics, especially in light of the necessity to overcome radiation reaction during the acceleration process. Magnetic reconnection and collisionless shocks have been invoked as possible mechanisms. However, the inferred extreme particle acceleration requires the presence of coherent electric-field structures. How such large-scale accelerating structures (such as reconnecting current sheets) can spontaneously arise in turbulent astrophysical environments still remains a mystery. The proposed project will conduct a first-principles computational and theoretical study of kinetic turbulence in relativistic collisionless plasmas with a special focus on nonthermal particle acceleration and radiation emission. The main computational tool employed in this study will be the relativistic radiative particle-in-cell (PIC) code Zeltron, developed by the team members at the Univ. of Colorado. This code has a unique capability to self-consistently include the synchrotron and inverse-Compton radiation reaction force on the relativistic particles, while simultaneously computing the resulting observable radiative signatures. This proposal envisions performing massively parallel, large-scale three-dimensional simulations of driven and decaying kinetic turbulence in physical regimes relevant to real astrophysical systems (such as the Crab PWN), including the

  7. Combining Diffusive Shock Acceleration with Acceleration by Contracting and Reconnecting Small-scale Flux Ropes at Heliospheric Shocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    le Roux, J. A.; Zank, G. P.; Webb, G. M.; Khabarova, O. V.

    2016-08-01

    Computational and observational evidence is accruing that heliospheric shocks, as emitters of vorticity, can produce downstream magnetic flux ropes and filaments. This led Zank et al. to investigate a new paradigm whereby energetic particle acceleration near shocks is a combination of diffusive shock acceleration (DSA) with downstream acceleration by many small-scale contracting and reconnecting (merging) flux ropes. Using a model where flux-rope acceleration involves a first-order Fermi mechanism due to the mean compression of numerous contracting flux ropes, Zank et al. provide theoretical support for observations that power-law spectra of energetic particles downstream of heliospheric shocks can be harder than predicted by DSA theory and that energetic particle intensities should peak behind shocks instead of at shocks as predicted by DSA theory. In this paper, a more extended formalism of kinetic transport theory developed by le Roux et al. is used to further explore this paradigm. We describe how second-order Fermi acceleration, related to the variance in the electromagnetic fields produced by downstream small-scale flux-rope dynamics, modifies the standard DSA model. The results show that (i) this approach can qualitatively reproduce observations of particle intensities peaking behind the shock, thus providing further support for the new paradigm, and (ii) stochastic acceleration by compressible flux ropes tends to be more efficient than incompressible flux ropes behind shocks in modifying the DSA spectrum of energetic particles.

  8. PARTICLE ACCELERATION IN FRAGMENTING PERIODIC RECONNECTING CURRENT SHEETS IN SOLAR FLARES

    SciTech Connect

    Gordovskyy, M.; Browning, P. K.; Vekstein, G. E.

    2010-09-10

    Proton and electron acceleration in a fragmenting periodic current sheet (CS) is investigated, based on the forced magnetic reconnection scenario. The aim is to understand the role of CS fragmentation in high-energy beam generation in solar flares. We combine magnetohydrodynamics and test-particle models to consider particle trajectories consistent with a time-dependent reconnection model. It is shown that accelerated particles in such a model form two distinct populations. Protons and electrons moving in open magnetic field have energy spectra that are a combination of the initial Maxwellian distribution and a power-law high-energy (E>20 keV) part. The second population contains particles moving in a closed magnetic field around O-points. These particles move predominantly along the guiding field and their energies fall within quite a narrow range between {approx}1 MeV and {approx}10 MeV. It is also found that particles moving in an open magnetic field have a considerably wider pitch-angle distribution.

  9. Particle acceleration, transport and turbulence in cosmic and heliospheric physics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Matthaeus, W.

    1992-01-01

    In this progress report, the long term goals, recent scientific progress, and organizational activities are described. The scientific focus of this annual report is in three areas: first, the physics of particle acceleration and transport, including heliospheric modulation and transport, shock acceleration and galactic propagation and reacceleration of cosmic rays; second, the development of theories of the interaction of turbulence and large scale plasma and magnetic field structures, as in winds and shocks; third, the elucidation of the nature of magnetohydrodynamic turbulence processes and the role such turbulence processes might play in heliospheric, galactic, cosmic ray physics, and other space physics applications.

  10. Electron acceleration by parallel and perpendicular electric fields during magnetic reconnection without guide field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bessho, N.; Chen, L.-J.; Germaschewski, K.; Bhattacharjee, A.

    2015-11-01

    Electron acceleration due to the electric field parallel to the background magnetic field during magnetic reconnection with no guide field is investigated by theory and two-dimensional electromagnetic particle-in-cell simulations and compared with acceleration due to the electric field perpendicular to the magnetic field. The magnitude of the parallel electric potential shows dependence on the ratio of the plasma frequency to the electron cyclotron frequency as (ωpe/Ωe)-2 and on the background plasma density as nb-1/2. In the Earth's magnetotail, the parameter ωpe/Ωe˜9 and the background (lobe) density can be of the order of 0.01 cm-3, and it is expected that the parallel electric potential is not large enough to accelerate electrons up to 100 keV. Therefore, we must consider the effect of the perpendicular electric field to account for electron energization in excess of 100 keV in the Earth's magnetotail. Trajectories for high-energy electrons are traced in a simulation to demonstrate that acceleration due to the perpendicular electric field in the diffusion region is the dominant acceleration mechanism, rather than acceleration due to the parallel electric fields in the exhaust regions. For energetic electrons accelerated near the X line due to the perpendicular electric field, pitch angle scattering converts the perpendicular momentum to the parallel momentum. On the other hand, for passing electrons that are mainly accelerated by the parallel electric field, pitch angle scattering converting the parallel momentum to the perpendicular momentum occurs. In this way, particle acceleration and pitch angle scattering will generate heated electrons in the exhaust regions.

  11. Lagrangian acceleration of passive tracers in statistically steady rotating turbulence.

    PubMed

    Del Castello, Lorenzo; Clercx, Herman J H

    2011-11-18

    The statistical properties of the Lagrangian acceleration vector of passive tracers in statistically steady rotating turbulence is studied by particle tracking velocimetry. Direct effects of the background rotation are the suppression of high-acceleration events parallel to the (vertical) rotation axis, the enhancement of high-acceleration events for the horizontal acceleration, and the strong amplification of the autocorrelation of the acceleration component perpendicular to both the rotation vector Ω and local velocity vector u. The autocorrelation of the acceleration component in the plane set up by Ω and u is only mildly enhanced.

  12. Numerical simulation of solar cosmic ray acceleration in reconnecting current sheets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balabin, Yury; Podgorny, Igor; Podgorny, Alexander; Vashenyuk, Eduard

    The set of neutron monitors measurements reveals two components of relativistic protons that accompaniment a flare. The prompt component of relativistic protons is created simultaneously with flare hard X-ray radiation. It possesses information about the mechanism of particle acceleration in a flare up to 10 GeV. Prompt component shows the exponential spectrum with W0 order of 0.5 GeV. The possibility of particle acceleration in a current sheet has been considered in the frame of the elctrodynamical solar flare model. Particles can get energy during acceleration in the Lorenz electric field along a singular line. The similar mechanism of acceleration has been observed in the powerful pinch discharge. In previous simulation works it has been shown that exponential spectrum appears, if the electric field is applied along a magnetic symmetrical X-type singular line. Such simulation can be considered as a first step for reality, because the real field distribution is much more complicated. Now numerical simulations have been carried out for the real magnetic and electric configurations calculated in MHD numerical experiments for the famous Bastille flare. The result of simulation shows that the spectrum of accelerated protons during a flare indeed is the exponential one. From comparison of simulation results with observable spectra of solar protons the rate of reconnection of order of 107 cm/s for W0 0.5 GeV is estimated.

  13. Wave propagation in turbulent media: use of convergence acceleration methods.

    PubMed

    Baram, A; Tsadka, S; Azar, Z; Tur, M

    1988-06-01

    We propose the use of convergence acceleration methods for the evaluation of integral expressions of an oscillatory nature, often encountered in the study of optical wave propagation in the turbulent atmosphere. These techniques offer substantial savings in computation time with appreciable gain in accuracy. As an example, we apply the Levin u acceleration scheme to the problem of remote sensing of transversal wind profiles.

  14. Coupling between roughness and freestream acceleration in turbulent boundary layers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuan, Junlin; Piomelli, Ugo

    2015-11-01

    To explain various rough-wall flow responses to different types of free-stream conditions previously observed, we carried out a direct numerical simulation of a spatially developing turbulent boundary layer with freestream acceleration. Unlike the equilibrium (self-similar) accelerating scenario, where a strong acceleration leads to complete laminarization and lower friction, in the present non-equilibrium case the friction coefficient increases with acceleration, due to the faster near-wall acceleration than that of the freestream. At the same time, roughness reduces the near-wall time scale of the turbulence, preventing the acceleration from linearly stretching the near-wall eddies and freezing the turbulence intensity as in the smooth case. In addition, acceleration leads to similar decrease of mean-velocity logarithmic slope on rough and smooth walls; this allows a clear definition of the roughness function in a local sense. Interestingly, this roughness function correlates with the roughness Reynolds number in the same way as in self-similar or non-accelerating flows. This study may also help develop benchmark cases for evaluating rough-wall treatments for industrial turbulence models.

  15. Fast Magnetic Reconnection and Particle Acceleration in Relativistic Low-density Electron-Positron Plasmas without Guide Field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bessho, Naoki; Bhattacharjee, A.

    2012-05-01

    Magnetic reconnection and particle acceleration in relativistic Harris sheets in low-density electron-positron plasmas with no guide field have been studied by means of two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations. Reconnection rates are of the order of one when the background density in a Harris sheet is of the order of 1% of the density in the current sheet, which is consistent with previous results in the non-relativistic regime. It has been demonstrated that the increase of the Lorentz factors of accelerated particles significantly enhances the collisionless resistivity needed to sustain a large reconnection electric field. It is shown analytically and numerically that the energy spectrum of accelerated particles near the X-line is the product of a power law and an exponential function of energy, γ-1/4exp (- aγ1/2), where γ is the Lorentz factor and a is a constant. However, in the low-density regime, while the most energetic particles are produced near X-lines, many more particles are energized within magnetic islands. Particles are energized in contracting islands by multiple reflection, but the mechanism is different from Fermi acceleration in magnetic islands for magnetized particles in the presence of a guide field. In magnetic islands, strong core fields are generated and plasma beta values are reduced. As a consequence, the fire-hose instability condition is not satisfied in most of the island region, and island contraction and particle acceleration can continue. In island coalescence, reconnection between two islands can accelerate some particles, however, many particles are decelerated and cooled, which is contrary to what has been discussed in the literature on particle acceleration due to reconnection in non-relativistic hydrogen plasmas.

  16. Field-Guided Proton Acceleration at Reconnecting x-Points in Flares

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamilton, B.; McCLEMENTS, K. G.; Fletcher, L.; Thyagaraja, A.

    2003-06-01

    An explicitly energy-conserving full orbit code CUEBIT, developed originally to describe energetic particle effects in laboratory fusion experiments, has been applied to the problem of proton acceleration in solar flares. The model fields are obtained from solutions of the linearised MHD equations for reconnecting modes at an X-type neutral point, with the additional ingredient of a longitudinal magnetic field component. To accelerate protons to the highest observed energies on flare timescales, it is necessary to invoke anomalous resistivity in the MHD solution. It is shown that the addition of a longitudinal field component greatly increases the efficiency of ion acceleration, essentially because it greatly reduces the magnitude of drift motions away from the vicinity of the X-point, where the accelerating component of the electric field is largest. Using plasma parameters consistent with flare observations, we obtain proton distributions extending up to γ-ray-emitting energies (>1 MeV). In some cases the energy distributions exhibit a bump-on-tail in the MeV range. In general, the shape of the distribution is sensitive to the model parameters.

  17. Generation of Alfvénic waves and turbulence in reconnection jets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoshino, Masahiro; Higashimori, Katsuaki

    2015-05-01

    The magnetohydrodynamic linear stability with the localized bulk flow oriented parallel to the neutral sheet is investigated, by including the Hall effect and the guide magnetic field. We observe three different unstable modes: a "streaming tearing" mode at a slow flow speed, a "streaming sausage" mode at a medium flow speed, and a "streaming kink" mode at a fast flow speed. The streaming tearing and sausage modes have a standard tearing mode-like structure with symmetric density fluctuations in the neutral sheet, while the kink mode has an asymmetric fluctuation. The growth rate of the streaming tearing mode decreases with increasing magnetic Reynolds number, while the growth rates of the sausage and kink modes do not depend strongly on the Reynolds number. The sausage and kink modes can be unstable for not only super-Alfvénic flow but also sub-Alfvénic flow when the lobe density is low. The wavelengths of these unstable modes are of the same order of magnitude as the thickness of the plasma sheet. Their maximum growth rates are higher than that of a standard tearing mode, and under a strong guide magnetic field, the growth rates of the sausage and kink modes are enhanced, while under a weak guide magnetic field, they are suppressed. For a thin plasma sheet with the Hall effect, the fluctuations of the streaming modes can exist over the plasma sheet. These unstable modes may be regarded as being one of the processes generating Alfvénic turbulence in the plasma sheet during magnetic reconnection.

  18. Charged-particle acceleration in a reconnecting current sheet including multiple magnetic islands and a nonuniform background magnetic field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Y.; Wu, N.; Lin, J.

    2017-09-01

    Context. Charged particles are accelerated to high energies in solar flares. Although we know that magnetic reconnection is an efficient mechanism in generating energetic particles, the detailed role it plays in accelerating particles is still unknown. Aims: We investigate particle acceleration by magnetic reconnection in the current sheet, including multiple islands and a guide field. Methods: The long current sheet produced by the disruption in the corona magnetic field is usually not stable to various plasma instabilities, among which the tearing mode is the most important, and magnetic islands start to form in the current sheet when these instabilities develop. Two reverse processes are typically observed in the sheet: cascading of large islands to smaller ones, and merging of small islands into larger ones. Coalescent reconnection consequently takes place between two adjacent islands when merging occurs. The electric field induced by the coalescent reconnection is opposite to the electric field of the primary large-scale reconnection. We studied particle acceleration in such a current sheet and examined in detail the dynamic properties of electrons and protons in the current sheet through test particle approach. Results: We found that some particles can be accelerated to high energies in a very short time, and some particles (near the coalescence reconnection site) are accelerated and decelerated back and forth by the primary and secondary electric fields. Particle motions show two distinct types along different trajectories: some particles are trapped around magnetic islands, and some escape from the current sheet mainly along open field lines. With the presence of a guide field, protons and electrons are found to eventually move in different directions. The energy spectra for both species follow a double power-law shape. The softer components of the power-law spectrum are due to the particles that are trapped and circulate around magnetic islands, while the

  19. KINETIC MODELING OF PARTICLE ACCELERATION IN A SOLAR NULL-POINT RECONNECTION REGION

    SciTech Connect

    Baumann, G.; Haugbolle, T.; Nordlund, A.

    2013-07-10

    The primary focus of this paper is on the particle acceleration mechanism in solar coronal three-dimensional reconnection null-point regions. Starting from a potential field extrapolation of a Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) magnetogram taken on 2002 November 16, we first performed magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) simulations with horizontal motions observed by SOHO applied to the photospheric boundary of the computational box. After a build-up of electric current in the fan plane of the null point, a sub-section of the evolved MHD data was used as initial and boundary conditions for a kinetic particle-in-cell model of the plasma. We find that sub-relativistic electron acceleration is mainly driven by a systematic electric field in the current sheet. A non-thermal population of electrons with a power-law distribution in energy forms in the simulated pre-flare phase, featuring a power-law index of about -1.78. This work provides a first step toward bridging the gap between macroscopic scales on the order of hundreds of Mm and kinetic scales on the order of centimeter in the solar corona, and explains how to achieve such a cross-scale coupling by utilizing either physical modifications or (equivalent) modifications of the constants of nature. With their exceptionally high resolution-up to 135 billion particles and 3.5 billion grid cells of size 17.5 km-these simulations offer a new opportunity to study particle acceleration in solar-like settings.

  20. ELECTRON ACCELERATION BY CASCADING RECONNECTION IN THE SOLAR CORONA. I. MAGNETIC GRADIENT AND CURVATURE DRIFT EFFECTS

    SciTech Connect

    Zhou, X.; Büchner, J.; Bárta, M.; Gan, W.; Liu, S.

    2015-12-10

    We investigate the electron acceleration by magnetic gradient and curvature drift effects in cascading magnetic reconnection of a coronal current sheet via a test particle method in the framework of the guiding center approximation. After several Alfvén transit times, most of the electrons injected at the current sheet are still trapped in the magnetic islands. A small fraction of the injected electrons precipitate into the chromosphere. The acceleration of trapped electrons is dominated by the magnetic curvature drifts, which change the parallel momentum of the electron, and appears to be more efficient than the acceleration of precipitating electrons, which is dominated by the perpendicular momentum change caused by the magnetic gradient drifts. With the resulting trapped energetic electron distribution, the corresponding hard X-ray (HXR) radiation spectra are calculated using an optically thin Bremsstrahlung model. Trapped electrons may explain flare loop top HXR emission as well as the observed bright spots along current sheets trailing coronal mass ejections. The asymmetry of precipitating electrons with respect to the polarity inversion line may contribute to the observed asymmetry of footpoint emission.

  1. Kinetic Modeling of Particle Acceleration in a Solar Null-point Reconnection Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baumann, G.; Haugbølle, T.; Nordlund, Å.

    2013-07-01

    The primary focus of this paper is on the particle acceleration mechanism in solar coronal three-dimensional reconnection null-point regions. Starting from a potential field extrapolation of a Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) magnetogram taken on 2002 November 16, we first performed magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) simulations with horizontal motions observed by SOHO applied to the photospheric boundary of the computational box. After a build-up of electric current in the fan plane of the null point, a sub-section of the evolved MHD data was used as initial and boundary conditions for a kinetic particle-in-cell model of the plasma. We find that sub-relativistic electron acceleration is mainly driven by a systematic electric field in the current sheet. A non-thermal population of electrons with a power-law distribution in energy forms in the simulated pre-flare phase, featuring a power-law index of about -1.78. This work provides a first step toward bridging the gap between macroscopic scales on the order of hundreds of Mm and kinetic scales on the order of centimeter in the solar corona, and explains how to achieve such a cross-scale coupling by utilizing either physical modifications or (equivalent) modifications of the constants of nature. With their exceptionally high resolution—up to 135 billion particles and 3.5 billion grid cells of size 17.5 km—these simulations offer a new opportunity to study particle acceleration in solar-like settings.

  2. Reconnection of Magnetic Fields

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1984-01-01

    Spacecraft observations of steady and nonsteady reconnection at the magnetopause are reviewed. Computer simulations of three-dimensional reconnection in the geomagnetic tail are discussed. Theoretical aspects of the energization of particles in current sheets and of the microprocesses in the diffusion region are presented. Terrella experiments in which magnetospheric reconnection is simulated at both the magnetopause and in the tail are described. The possible role of reconnection in the evolution of solar magnetic fields and solar flares is discussed. A two-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic computer simulation of turbulent reconnection is examined. Results concerning reconnection in Tokamak devices are also presented.

  3. Gyrokinetic theory of turbulent acceleration of parallel rotation in tokamak plasmas.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lu; Diamond, P H

    2013-06-28

    A mechanism for turbulent acceleration of parallel rotation is discovered using gyrokinetic theory. This new turbulent acceleration term cannot be written as a divergence of parallel Reynolds stress. Therefore, turbulent acceleration acts as a local source or sink of parallel rotation. The physics of turbulent acceleration is intrinsically different from the Reynolds stress. For symmetry breaking by positive intensity gradient, a positive turbulent acceleration, i.e., cocurrent rotation, is predicted. The turbulent acceleration is independent of mean rotation and mean rotation gradient, and so constitutes a new candidate for the origin of spontaneous rotation. A quasilinear estimate for ion temperature gradient turbulence shows that the turbulent acceleration of parallel rotation is explicitly linked to the ion temperature gradient scale length and temperature ratio Ti0/Te0. Methods for testing the effects of turbulent parallel acceleration by gyrokinetic simulation and experiment are proposed.

  4. Stochastic Particle Acceleration in Turbulence Generated by Magnetorotational Instability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimura, Shigeo S.; Toma, Kenji; Suzuki, Takeru K.; Inutsuka, Shu-ichiro

    2016-05-01

    We investigate stochastic particle acceleration in accretion flows. It is believed that magnetorotational instability (MRI) generates turbulence inside accretion flows and that cosmic rays (CRs) are accelerated by the turbulence. We calculate equations of motion for CRs in the turbulent fields generated by MRI with the shearing box approximation and without back reaction to the field. Our results show that the CRs randomly gain or lose their energy through interaction with the turbulent fields. The CRs diffuse in the configuration space anisotropically: the diffusion coefficient in the direction of the unperturbed flow is about 20 times higher than the Bohm coefficient, while those in the other directions are only a few times higher than the Bohm. The momentum distribution is isotropic and its evolution can be described by the diffusion equation in momentum space where the diffusion coefficient is a power-law function of the CR momentum. We show that the shear acceleration works efficiently for energetic particles. We also cautiously note that in the shearing box approximation, particles that cross the simulation box many times along the radial direction undergo unphysical runaway acceleration by the Lorentz transformation, which needs to be taken into account with special care.

  5. Flux tubes embedded into reconnection outflows in the solar wind

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voros, Z.; Zaqarashvili, T.; Sasunov, Y.; Narita, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Reconnection exhausts in the solar wind are usually interpreted in terms of a quasi-stationary Petschek-type reconnection model. Accordingly, within a region of magnetic field reversal, the wedge-shaped, Alfvenic accelerated plasma outflow is bounded by layers containing (anti-) correlated components of speed and magnetic field fluctuations. However, time-dependent impulsive reconnection can generate flux ropes embedded into accelerated outflows. Reconnection associated moving flux ropes or plasmoids are frequently observed in the Earth's magnetotail, while similar observations are missing in the solar wind. We present the first observations of small-scale magnetic flux ropes associated with reconnection exhausts in the solar wind, using the data from the WIND probe. We argue that the interaction of moving flux ropes with the background plasma can generate turbulence leading finally to the local heating of the solar wind.

  6. Exploring the role of turbulent acceleration and heating in fractal current sheet of solar flares­ from hybrid particle in cell and lattice Boltzmann virtual test

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, B.; Lin, J.; Yuan, X.; Li, Y.; Shen, C.

    2016-12-01

    The role of turbulent acceleration and heating in the fractal magnetic reconnection of solar flares is still not clear, especially at the X-point in the diffusion region. At virtual test aspect, it is hardly to quantitatively analyze the vortex generation, turbulence evolution, particle acceleration and heating in the magnetic islands coalesce in fractal manner, formatting into largest plasmid and ejection process in diffusion region through classical magnetohydrodynamics numerical method. With the development of physical particle numerical method (particle in cell method [PIC], Lattice Boltzmann method [LBM]) and high performance computing technology in recently two decades. Kinetic simulation has developed into an effectively manner to exploring the role of magnetic field and electric field turbulence in charged particles acceleration and heating process, since all the physical aspects relating to turbulent reconnection are taken into account. In this paper, the LBM based lattice DxQy grid and extended distribution are added into charged-particles-to-grid-interpolation of PIC based finite difference time domain scheme and Yee Grid, the hybrid PIC-LBM simulation tool is developed to investigating turbulence acceleration on TIANHE-2. The actual solar coronal condition (L≈105Km,B≈50-500G,T≈5×106K, n≈108-109, mi/me≈500-1836) is applied to study the turbulent acceleration and heating in solar flare fractal current sheet. At stage I, magnetic islands shrink due to magnetic tension forces, the process of island shrinking halts when the kinetic energy of the accelerated particles is sufficient to halt the further collapse due to magnetic tension forces, the particle energy gain is naturally a large fraction of the released magnetic energy. At stage II and III, the particles from the energized group come in to the center of the diffusion region and stay longer in the area. In contract, the particles from non energized group only skim the outer part of the

  7. Turbulent fluid acceleration generates clusters of gyrotactic microorganisms.

    PubMed

    De Lillo, Filippo; Cencini, Massimo; Durham, William M; Barry, Michael; Stocker, Roman; Climent, Eric; Boffetta, Guido

    2014-01-31

    The motility of microorganisms is often biased by gradients in physical and chemical properties of their environment, with myriad implications on their ecology. Here we show that fluid acceleration reorients gyrotactic plankton, triggering small-scale clustering. We experimentally demonstrate this phenomenon by studying the distribution of the phytoplankton Chlamydomonas augustae within a rotating tank and find it to be in good agreement with a new, generalized model of gyrotaxis. When this model is implemented in a direct numerical simulation of turbulent flow, we find that fluid acceleration generates multifractal plankton clustering, with faster and more stable cells producing stronger clustering. By producing accumulations in high-vorticity regions, this process is fundamentally different from clustering by gravitational acceleration, expanding the range of mechanisms by which turbulent flows can impact the spatial distribution of active suspensions.

  8. Lagrangian acceleration statistics in a turbulent channel flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stelzenmuller, Nickolas; Polanco, Juan Ignacio; Vignal, Laure; Vinkovic, Ivana; Mordant, Nicolas

    2017-05-01

    Lagrangian acceleration statistics in a fully developed turbulent channel flow at Reτ=1440 are investigated, based on tracer particle tracking in experiments and direct numerical simulations. The evolution with wall distance of the Lagrangian velocity and acceleration time scales is analyzed. Dependency between acceleration components in the near-wall region is described using cross-correlations and joint probability density functions. The strong streamwise coherent vortices typical of wall-bounded turbulent flows are shown to have a significant impact on the dynamics. This results in a strong anisotropy at small scales in the near-wall region that remains present in most of the channel. Such statistical properties may be used as constraints in building advanced Lagrangian stochastic models to predict the dispersion and mixing of chemical components for combustion or environmental studies.

  9. Magnetic Reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Masaaki Yamada, Russell Kulsrud and Hantao Ji

    2009-09-17

    We review the fundamental physics of magnetic reconnection in laboratory and space plasmas, by discussing results from theory, numerical simulations, observations from space satellites, and the recent results from laboratory plasma experiments. After a brief review of the well-known early work, we discuss representative recent experimental and theoretical work and attempt to interpret the essence of significant modern findings. In the area of local reconnection physics, many significant findings have been made with regard to two- uid physics and are related to the cause of fast reconnection. Profiles of the neutral sheet, Hall currents, and the effects of guide field, collisions, and micro-turbulence are discussed to understand the fundamental processes in a local reconnection layer both in space and laboratory plasmas. While the understanding of the global reconnection dynamics is less developed, notable findings have been made on this issue through detailed documentation of magnetic self-organization phenomena in fusion plasmas. Application of magnetic reconnection physics to astrophysical plasmas is also brie y discussed.

  10. SIMULATIONS OF PARTICLE ACCELERATION BEYOND THE CLASSICAL SYNCHROTRON BURNOFF LIMIT IN MAGNETIC RECONNECTION: AN EXPLANATION OF THE CRAB FLARES

    SciTech Connect

    Cerutti, B.; Werner, G. R.; Uzdensky, D. A.; Begelman, M. C. E-mail: greg.werner@colorado.edu E-mail: mitch@jila.colorado.edu

    2013-06-20

    It is generally accepted that astrophysical sources cannot emit synchrotron radiation above 160 MeV in their rest frame. This limit is given by the balance between the accelerating electric force and the radiation reaction force acting on the electrons. The discovery of synchrotron gamma-ray flares in the Crab Nebula, well above this limit, challenges this classical picture of particle acceleration. To overcome this limit, particles must accelerate in a region of high electric field and low magnetic field. This is possible only with a non-ideal magnetohydrodynamic process, like magnetic reconnection. We present the first numerical evidence of particle acceleration beyond the synchrotron burnoff limit, using a set of two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations of ultra-relativistic pair plasma reconnection. We use a new code, Zeltron, that includes self-consistently the radiation reaction force in the equation of motion of the particles. We demonstrate that the most energetic particles move back and forth across the reconnection layer, following relativistic Speiser orbits. These particles then radiate >160 MeV synchrotron radiation rapidly, within a fraction of a full gyration, after they exit the layer. Our analysis shows that the high-energy synchrotron flux is highly variable in time because of the strong anisotropy and inhomogeneity of the energetic particles. We discover a robust positive correlation between the flux and the cut-off energy of the emitted radiation, mimicking the effect of relativistic Doppler amplification. A strong guide field quenches the emission of >160 MeV synchrotron radiation. Our results are consistent with the observed properties of the Crab flares, supporting the reconnection scenario.

  11. Electron acceleration in the Solar corona - 3D PiC code simulations of guide field reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alejandro Munoz Sepulveda, Patricio

    2017-04-01

    The efficient electron acceleration in the solar corona detected by means of hard X-ray emission is still not well understood. Magnetic reconnection through current sheets is one of the proposed production mechanisms of non-thermal electrons in solar flares. Previous works in this direction were based mostly on test particle calculations or 2D fully-kinetic PiC simulations. We have now studied the consequences of self-generated current-aligned instabilities on the electron acceleration mechanisms by 3D magnetic reconnection. For this sake, we carried out 3D Particle-in-Cell (PiC) code numerical simulations of force free reconnecting current sheets, appropriate for the description of the solar coronal plasmas. We find an efficient electron energization, evidenced by the formation of a non-thermal power-law tail with a hard spectral index smaller than -2 in the electron energy distribution function. We discuss and compare the influence of the parallel electric field versus the curvature and gradient drifts in the guiding-center approximation on the overall acceleration, and their dependence on different plasma parameters.

  12. Shock Acceleration Model with Postshock Turbulence for Giant Radio Relics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kang, Hyesung

    2017-08-01

    We explore the shock acceleration model for giant radio relics, in which relativistic electrons are accelerated via diffusive shock acceleration (DSA) by merger-driven shocks in the outskirts of galaxy clusters. In addition to DSA, turbulent acceleration by compressive MHD modes downstream of the shock are included as well as energy losses of postshock electrons due to Coulomb scattering, synchrotron emission, and inverse Compton scattering off the cosmic background radiation. Considering that only a small fraction of merging clusters host radio relics, we favor a reacceleration scenario in which radio relics are generated preferentially by shocks encountering the regions containing low-energy (γ_{e} ≲ 300) cosmic ray electrons (CRe). We perform time-dependent DSA simulations of spherically expanding shocks with physical parameters relevant for the Sausage radio relic, and calculate the radio synchrotron emission from the accelerated CRe. We find that significant level of postshock turbulent acceleration is required in order to reproduce broad profiles of the observed radio flux densities of the Sausage relic. Moreover, the spectral curvature in the observed integrated radio spectrum can be explained, if the putative shock should have swept up and exited out of the preshock region of fossil CRe about 10 Myr ago.

  13. Design of an electromagnetic accelerator for turbulent hydrodynamic mix studies

    SciTech Connect

    Susoeff, A.R.; Hawke, R.S.; Morrison, J.J.; Dimonte, G.; Remington, B.A.

    1993-12-08

    An electromagnetic accelerator in the form of a linear electric motor (LEM) has been designed to achieve controlled acceleration profiles of a carriage containing hydrodynamically unstable fluids for the investigation of the development of turbulent mix. The Rayleigh- Taylor instability is investigated by accelerating two dissimilar density fluids using the LEM to achieve a wide variety of acceleration and deceleration profiles. The acceleration profiles are achieved by independent control of rail and augmentation currents. A variety of acceleration-time profiles are possible including: (1) constant, (2) impulsive and (3) shaped. The LEM and support structure are a robust design in order to withstand high loads with deflections and to mitigate operational vibration. Vibration of the carriage during acceleration could create artifacts in the data which would interfere with the intended study of the Rayleigh-Taylor instability. The design allows clear access for diagnostic techniques such as laser induced fluorescence radiography, shadowgraphs and particle imaging velocimetry. Electromagnetic modeling codes were used to optimize the rail and augmentation coil positions within the support structure framework. Results of contemporary studies for non-arcing sliding contact of solid armatures are used for the design of the driving armature and the dynamic electromagnetic braking system. A 0. 6MJ electrolytic capacitor bank is used for energy storage to drive the LEM. This report will discuss a LEM design which will accelerate masses of up to 3kg to a maximum of about 3000g{sub o}, where g{sub o} is accelerated due to gravity.

  14. Multigrid acceleration and turbulence models for computations of 3D turbulent jets in crossflow

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Demuren, A. O.

    1992-01-01

    A multigrid method is presented for the calculation of three-dimensional turbulent jets in crossflow. Turbulence closure is achieved with either the standard k-epsilon model or a Reynolds stress model (RSM). Multigrid acceleration enables convergence rates which are far superior to that for a single grid method to be obtained with both turbulence models. With the k-epsilon model the rate approaches that for laminar flow, but with RSM it is somewhat slower. The increased stiffness of the system of equation in the latter may be responsible. Computed results with both turbulence models are compared to experimental data for a pair of opposed jets in crossflow. Both models yield reasonable agreement for the mean flow velocity, but RSM yields better predictions of the Reynolds stresses.

  15. Three-dimensional fast magnetic reconnection driven by relativistic ultraintense femtosecond lasers.

    PubMed

    Ping, Y L; Zhong, J Y; Sheng, Z M; Wang, X G; Liu, B; Li, Y T; Yan, X Q; He, X T; Zhang, J; Zhao, G

    2014-03-01

    Three-dimensional fast magnetic reconnection driven by two ultraintense femtosecond laser pulses is investigated by relativistic particle-in-cell simulation, where the two paralleled incident laser beams are shot into a near-critical plasma layer to form a magnetic reconnection configuration in self-generated magnetic fields. A reconnection X point and out-of-plane quadrupole field structures associated with magnetic reconnection are formed. The reconnection rate is found to be faster than that found in previous two-dimensional Hall magnetohydrodynamic simulations and electrostatic turbulence contribution to the reconnection electric field plays an essential role. Both in-plane and out-of-plane electron and ion accelerations up to a few MeV due to the magnetic reconnection process are also obtained.

  16. Magnetic field reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Axford, W. I.

    The fundamental principles of particle acceleration by magnetic reconnection in cosmic plasmas are reviewed. The history of reconnection models is traced, and consideration is given to the Kelvin-Helmholtz theorem, the frozen-field theorem, the application of the Kelvin-Helmholtz theorem to a collisionless plasma, solutions to specific reconnection problems, and configurational instability. Diagrams and graphs are provided, and the objections raised by critics of the reconnection theory and/or its astrophysical applications are discussed.

  17. Onset of turbulence in accelerated high-Reynolds-number flow.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Ye; Robey, Harry F; Buckingham, Alfred C

    2003-05-01

    A new criterion, flow drive time, is identified here as a necessary condition for transition to turbulence in accelerated, unsteady flows. Compressible, high-Reynolds-number flows initiated, for example, in shock tubes, supersonic wind tunnels with practical limitations on dimensions or reservoir capacity, and high energy density pulsed laser target vaporization experimental facilities may not provide flow duration adequate for turbulence development. In addition, for critical periods of the overall flow development, the driving background flow is often unsteady in the experiments as well as in the physical flow situations they are designed to mimic. In these situations transition to fully developed turbulence may not be realized despite achievement of flow Reynolds numbers associated with or exceeding stationary flow transitional criteria. Basically our transitional criterion and prediction procedure extends to accelerated, unsteady background flow situations the remarkably universal mixing transition criterion proposed by Dimotakis [P. E. Dimotakis, J. Fluid Mech. 409, 69 (2000)] for stationary flows. This provides a basis for the requisite space and time scaling. The emphasis here is placed on variable density flow instabilities initiated by constant acceleration Rayleigh-Taylor instability (RTI) or impulsive (shock) acceleration Richtmyer-Meshkov instability (RMI) or combinations of both. The significant influences of compressibility on these developing transitional flows are discussed with their implications on the procedural model development. A fresh perspective for predictive modeling and design of experiments for the instability growth and turbulent mixing transitional interval is provided using an analogy between the well-established buoyancy-drag model with applications of a hierarchy of single point turbulent transport closure models. Experimental comparisons with the procedural results are presented where use is made of three distinctly different types

  18. A CLASSIFICATION SCHEME FOR TURBULENT ACCELERATION PROCESSES IN SOLAR FLARES

    SciTech Connect

    Bian, Nicolas; Kontar, Eduard P.; Emslie, A. Gordon E-mail: eduard@astro.gla.ac.uk

    2012-08-01

    We establish a classification scheme for stochastic acceleration models involving low-frequency plasma turbulence in a strongly magnetized plasma. This classification takes into account both the properties of the accelerating electromagnetic field, and the nature of the transport of charged particles in the acceleration region. We group the acceleration processes as either resonant, non-resonant, or resonant-broadened, depending on whether the particle motion is free-streaming along the magnetic field, diffusive, or a combination of the two. Stochastic acceleration by moving magnetic mirrors and adiabatic compressions are addressed as illustrative examples. We obtain expressions for the momentum-dependent diffusion coefficient D(p), both for general forms of the accelerating force and for the situation when the electromagnetic force is wave-like, with a specified dispersion relation {omega} = {omega}(k). Finally, for models considered, we calculate the energy-dependent acceleration time, a quantity that can be directly compared with observations of the time profile of the radiation field produced by the accelerated particles, such as those occuring during solar flares.

  19. Thermodynamic constraints on stochastic acceleration in compressional turbulence

    PubMed Central

    Fisk, Lennard A.; Gloeckler, George

    2007-01-01

    Recent observations in the solar wind have revealed an important phenomenon. In circumstances where stochastic acceleration is expected, a suprathermal tail on the distribution function is formed with a common spectral shape: the spectrum is a power law in particle speed with a spectral index of −5. This common spectrum occurs in the quiet solar wind; in disturbed conditions downstream from shocks; and, in particular, throughout the heliosheath downstream from the termination shock of the solar wind currently being explored by Voyager 1. In this article, simple thermodynamic principles are applied to stochastic acceleration in compressional turbulence. The unique spectral index results when the entropy of the suprathermal tail has increased to the maximum allowable value. Relationships for the pressure in the suprathermal tail are also derived and found to be in agreement with observations. The results are shown to be consistent with the suprathermal tail arising from a cascade in energy, analogous to a turbulent cascade. The results may be applied broadly, because stochastic acceleration in compressional turbulence should be common in many astrophysical settings. PMID:17376865

  20. Thermodynamic constraints on stochastic acceleration in compressional turbulence.

    PubMed

    Fisk, Lennard A; Gloeckler, George

    2007-04-03

    Recent observations in the solar wind have revealed an important phenomenon. In circumstances where stochastic acceleration is expected, a suprathermal tail on the distribution function is formed with a common spectral shape: the spectrum is a power law in particle speed with a spectral index of -5. This common spectrum occurs in the quiet solar wind; in disturbed conditions downstream from shocks; and, in particular, throughout the heliosheath downstream from the termination shock of the solar wind currently being explored by Voyager 1. In this article, simple thermodynamic principles are applied to stochastic acceleration in compressional turbulence. The unique spectral index results when the entropy of the suprathermal tail has increased to the maximum allowable value. Relationships for the pressure in the suprathermal tail are also derived and found to be in agreement with observations. The results are shown to be consistent with the suprathermal tail arising from a cascade in energy, analogous to a turbulent cascade. The results may be applied broadly, because stochastic acceleration in compressional turbulence should be common in many astrophysical settings.

  1. Probing acceleration and turbulence at relativistic shocks in blazar jets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baring, Matthew G.; Böttcher, Markus; Summerlin, Errol J.

    2017-02-01

    Diffusive shock acceleration (DSA) at relativistic shocks is widely thought to be an important acceleration mechanism in various astrophysical jet sources, including radio-loud active galactic nuclei such as blazars. Such acceleration can produce the non-thermal particles that emit the broad-band continuum radiation that is detected from extragalactic jets. An important recent development for blazar science is the ability of Fermi-Large Area Telescope spectroscopy to pin down the shape of the distribution of the underlying non-thermal particle population. This paper highlights how multiwavelength spectra spanning optical to X-ray to gamma-ray bands can be used to probe diffusive acceleration in relativistic, oblique, magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) shocks in blazar jets. Diagnostics on the MHD turbulence near such shocks are obtained using thermal and non-thermal particle distributions resulting from detailed Monte Carlo simulations of DSA. These probes are afforded by the characteristic property that the synchrotron νFν peak energy does not appear in the gamma-ray band above 100 MeV. We investigate self-consistently the radiative synchrotron and inverse Compton signatures of the simulated particle distributions. Important constraints on the diffusive mean free paths of electrons, and the level of electromagnetic field turbulence are identified for three different case study blazars, Mrk 501, BL Lacertae and AO 0235+164. The X-ray excess of AO 0235+164 in a flare state can be modelled as the signature of bulk Compton scattering of external radiation fields, thereby tightly constraining the energy-dependence of the diffusion coefficient for electrons. The concomitant interpretations that turbulence levels decline with remoteness from jet shocks, and the probable significant role for non-gyroresonant diffusion, are posited.

  2. Multigrid acceleration and turbulence models for computations of 3D turbulent jets in crossflow

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Demuren, A. O.

    1991-01-01

    A multigrid method is presented for the calculation of three-dimensional turbulent jets in crossflow. Turbulence closure is achieved with either the standard k-epsilon model or a Reynolds Stress Model (RSM). Multigrid acceleration enables convergence rates which are far superior to that for a single grid method. With the k-epsilon model the rate approaches that for laminar flow, but with RSM it is somewhat slower. The increased stiffness of the system of equations in the latter may be responsible. Computed results with both turbulence models are compared with experimental data for a pair of opposed jets in crossflow. Both models yield reasonable agreement with mean flow velocity but RSM yields better prediction of the Reynolds stresses.

  3. Ultra-High-Energy Cosmic-Ray Acceleration by Magnetic Reconnection in Newborn Accretion-induced Collapse Pulsars.

    PubMed

    de Gouveia Dal Pino EM; Lazarian

    2000-06-10

    We here investigate the possibility that the ultra-high-energy cosmic-ray (UHECR) events observed above the Greisen-Zatsepin-Kuzmin (GZK) limit are mostly protons accelerated in reconnection sites just above the magnetosphere of newborn millisecond pulsars that are originated by accretion-induced collapse (AIC). We formulate the requirements for the acceleration mechanism and show that AIC pulsars with surface magnetic fields 1012 Gaccelerate particles to energies >/=10(20) eV. Because the expected rate of AIC sources in our Galaxy is very small ( approximately 10(-5) yr(-1)), the corresponding contribution to the flux of UHECRs is negligible and the total flux is given by the integrated contribution from AIC sources produced by the distribution of galaxies located within the distance that is unaffected by the GZK cutoff ( approximately 50 Mpc). We find that reconnection should convert a fraction xi greater, similar0.1 of magnetic energy into UHECRs in order to reproduce the observed flux.

  4. Modeling inertial particle acceleration statistics in isotropic turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ayyalasomayajula, S.; Warhaft, Z.; Collins, L. R.

    2008-09-01

    Our objective is to explain recent Lagrangian acceleration measurements of inertial particles in decaying, nearly isotropic turbulence [Ayyalasomayajula et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 97, 144507 (2006)]. These experiments showed that as particle inertial effects increased, the variance in the particle acceleration fluctuations was reduced, and the tails of the normalized particle acceleration probability density function (PDF) became systematically attenuated. We model this phenomenon using a base flow that consists of a two-dimensional array of evenly spaced vortices with signs and intensities that vary randomly in time. We simulate a large sample of inertial particles moving through the fluid without disturbing the flow (one-way coupling). Consistent with Bec et al. [J. Fluid Mech. 550, 349 (2006)], we find that our model exhibits preferential concentration or clustering of particles in regions located away from the vortex centers. That is, inertial particles selectively sample the flow field, oversampling regions with high strains and undersampling regions with high vorticities. At low Stokes numbers, this biased "sampling" of the flow is responsible for the reduction in the acceleration variance and partially explains the attenuation of the tails of the acceleration PDF. However, contrary to previous findings, we show that the tails of the PDF are also diminished by "filtering" induced by the attenuated response of the inertial particles to temporal variations in the fluid acceleration: Inertial particles do not respond to fluctuations with frequencies much higher than the inverse of the particle stopping time. We show that larger fluid acceleration events have higher frequencies and hence experience greater filtering by particle inertia. We contrast the vortex model with previous Lagrangian acceleration models by Sawford [Phys. Fluids A 3, 1577 (1991)] and Reynolds [Phys. Fluids 15, L1 (2003)] and show that although these models capture some aspects of the inertial

  5. Incompressible variable-density turbulence in an external acceleration field

    DOE PAGES

    Gat, Ilana; Matheou, Georgios; Chung, Daniel; ...

    2017-08-24

    Dynamics and mixing of a variable-density turbulent flow subject to an externally imposed acceleration field in the zero-Mach-number limit are studied in a series of direct numerical simulations. The flow configuration studied consists of alternating slabs of high- and low-density fluid in a triply periodic domain. Density ratios in the range ofmore » $$1.05\\leqslant R\\equiv \\unicode[STIX]{x1D70C}_{1}/\\unicode[STIX]{x1D70C}_{2}\\leqslant 10$$are investigated. The flow produces temporally evolving shear layers. A perpendicular density–pressure gradient is maintained in the mean as the flow evolves, with multi-scale baroclinic torques generated in the turbulent flow that ensues. For all density ratios studied, the simulations attain Reynolds numbers at the beginning of the fully developed turbulence regime. An empirical relation for the convection velocity predicts the observed entrainment-ratio and dominant mixed-fluid composition statistics. Two mixing-layer temporal evolution regimes are identified: an initial diffusion-dominated regime with a growth rate$${\\sim}t^{1/2}$$followed by a turbulence-dominated regime with a growth rate$${\\sim}t^{3}$$. In the turbulent regime, composition probability density functions within the shear layers exhibit a slightly tilted (‘non-marching’) hump, corresponding to the most probable mole fraction. In conclusion, the shear layers preferentially entrain low-density fluid by volume at all density ratios, which is reflected in the mixed-fluid composition.« less

  6. Turbulent Heating and Wave Pressure in Solar Wind Acceleration Modeling: New Insights to Empirical Forecasting of the Solar Wind

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woolsey, L. N.; Cranmer, S. R.

    2013-12-01

    The study of solar wind acceleration has made several important advances recently due to improvements in modeling techniques. Existing code and simulations test the competing theories for coronal heating, which include reconnection/loop-opening (RLO) models and wave/turbulence-driven (WTD) models. In order to compare and contrast the validity of these theories, we need flexible tools that predict the emergent solar wind properties from a wide range of coronal magnetic field structures such as coronal holes, pseudostreamers, and helmet streamers. ZEPHYR (Cranmer et al. 2007) is a one-dimensional magnetohydrodynamics code that includes Alfven wave generation and reflection and the resulting turbulent heating to accelerate solar wind in open flux tubes. We present the ZEPHYR output for a wide range of magnetic field geometries to show the effect of the magnetic field profiles on wind properties. We also investigate the competing acceleration mechanisms found in ZEPHYR to determine the relative importance of increased gas pressure from turbulent heating and the separate pressure source from the Alfven waves. To do so, we developed a code that will become publicly available for solar wind prediction. This code, TEMPEST, provides an outflow solution based on only one input: the magnetic field strength as a function of height above the photosphere. It uses correlations found in ZEPHYR between the magnetic field strength at the source surface and the temperature profile of the outflow solution to compute the wind speed profile based on the increased gas pressure from turbulent heating. With this initial solution, TEMPEST then adds in the Alfven wave pressure term to the modified Parker equation and iterates to find a stable solution for the wind speed. This code, therefore, can make predictions of the wind speeds that will be observed at 1 AU based on extrapolations from magnetogram data, providing a useful tool for empirical forecasting of the sol! ar wind.

  7. EXTREME PARTICLE ACCELERATION IN MAGNETIC RECONNECTION LAYERS: APPLICATION TO THE GAMMA-RAY FLARES IN THE CRAB NEBULA

    SciTech Connect

    Cerutti, Benoit; Uzdensky, Dmitri A.; Begelman, Mitchell C. E-mail: uzdensky@colorado.edu

    2012-02-20

    The gamma-ray space telescopes AGILE and Fermi detected short and bright synchrotron gamma-ray flares at photon energies above 100 MeV in the Crab Nebula. This discovery suggests that electron-positron pairs in the nebula are accelerated to PeV energies in a milligauss magnetic field, which is difficult to explain with classical models of particle acceleration and pulsar wind nebulae. We investigate whether particle acceleration in a magnetic reconnection layer can account for the puzzling properties of the flares. We numerically integrate relativistic test-particle orbits in the vicinity of the layer, including the radiation reaction force, and using analytical expressions for the large-scale electromagnetic fields. As they get accelerated by the reconnection electric field, the particles are focused deep inside the current layer where the magnetic field is small. The electrons suffer less from synchrotron losses and are accelerated to extremely high energies. Population studies show that, at the end of the layer, the particle distribution piles up at the maximum energy given by the electric potential drop and is focused into a thin fan beam. Applying this model to the Crab Nebula, we find that the emerging synchrotron emission spectrum peaks above 100 MeV and is close to the spectral shape of a single electron. The flare inverse Compton emission is negligible and no detectable emission is expected at other wavelengths. This mechanism provides a plausible explanation for the gamma-ray flares in the Crab Nebula and could be at work in other astrophysical objects such as relativistic jets in active galactic nuclei.

  8. Using MMS measurements to validate models of reconnection-driven magnetotail reconfiguration and particle acceleration during substorms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baker, Daniel N.

    2016-04-01

    New data from the Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission confirms and greatly extends the view that substorms are a configurational instability driven by magnetic reconnection. We have studied in detail a powerful storm period in June 2015 which shows that substorm events seen sequentially by the four MMS spacecraft subsequently feed the powerful enhancement of the radiation belts observed by the Van Allen Probes mission. Several sequences of significant southward IMF along with a period of high (VSW≥500 km/s) solar wind speed occurred following a strong interplanetary shock wave impact on the magnetosphere. We see that substorms provide a "seed" population, while high-speed solar wind drives the acceleration to relativistic energies in this two-step geomagnetic activity scenario. Thus, MMS data help validate models that invoke reconnection as a fundamental driver of magnetospheric particle acceleration. The data for several separate events on 22 June 2015 show that the magnetosphere progresses through a specific, well-observed sequence of energy-loading and stress-developing states until the entire system suddenly reconfigures. Energetic electron fluxes measured by the several MMS spacecraft reveal the clear temporal occurrence characteristics and the obvious relationships to concurrently measured solar wind drivers. This shows that enhancements in substorms are a key first step in the acceleration of radiation belt electrons to high energies as observed subsequently by the Van Allen Probes instrumentation. Thus, this high-resolution observational evidence along with the accompanying modeling has demonstrated that magnetospheric substorms are an important acceleration component within the coupled near-Earth system.

  9. Magnetic Reconnection-Powered Relativistic Particle Acceleration, High-Energy Gamma-Ray Emission, and Pair Production in Coronae of Accreting Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uzdensky, Dmitri

    2015-11-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a fundamental plasma process believed to play an important role in energetics of magnetically-dominated coronae of various astrophysical objects including accreting black holes. Building up on recent advances in kinetic simulations of relativistic collisionless reconnection, we investigate nonthermal particle acceleration and its key observational consequences for these systems. We argue that reconnection can efficiently accelerate coronal electrons (as well as ions) up to hundreds of MeV or even GeV energies. In brightest systems, radiation back-reaction due to inverse-Compton (and/or synchrotron) emission becomes important at these energies and limits any further electron acceleration, thereby turning reconnection layers into powerful and efficient radiators of γ-rays. We then evaluate the rate of absorption of the resulting γ-ray photons by the ambient soft (X-ray) photon fields and show that it can be a significant source of pair production, with important implications for the composition of black-hole coronae and jets. Finally, we assess the prospects of laboratory studies of magnetic reconnection in the physical regimes relevant to black-hole accretion flows using modern and future laser-plasma facilities. This work is supported by DOE, NSF, and NASA.

  10. Nonlinear propagation of kinetic Alfvén wave and turbulent spectrum in reconnection region of magnetotail

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yadav, Nitin; Rai, Rajesh Kumar; Sharma, Prachi; Uma, R.; Sharma, R. P.

    2017-06-01

    Kinetic Alfvén waves (KAWs) are known to play an important role in magnetic reconnection as well as in turbulence. In the present work, we have derived the dynamical equation of KAWs propagating through Harris sheet. It is assumed that background density gets modified due to nonlinearity and background field gets modified due to the presence of Harris sheet. This nonlinear dynamical equation is then solved semi-analytically as well as numerically. Due to the presence of background density and field perturbations, Harris sheet gets perturbed and propagating nonlinear KAWs undergoes localization and coherent structures are formed. The transverse scale size of these structures comes of the order of ion gyro radius which is consistent with the observations as well as with the results obtained from the paraxial approach based simplified model also. We have investigated the role of KAWs in the formation of current sheet/coherent structures due to the propagation of nonlinear KAWs through the Harris sheet. Based on these coherent structures, we have evaluated the power spectrum also and found that the obtained scaling after first breakpoint is quite consistent with the observation reported by Chaston et al. [Phys. Rev. Lett. 102, 015001 (2009)] in the ion diffusion region of magnetotail.

  11. Reconnection and particle acceleration in interacting flux ropes - I. Magnetohydrodynamics and test particles in 2.5D

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ripperda, B.; Porth, O.; Xia, C.; Keppens, R.

    2017-05-01

    Magnetic reconnection and non-thermal particle distributions associated with current-driven instabilities are investigated by means of resistive magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) simulations combined with relativistic test particle methods. We propose a system with two parallel, repelling current channels in an initially force-free equilibrium, as a simplified representation of flux ropes in a stellar magnetosphere. The current channels undergo a rotation and separation on Alfvénic time-scales, forming secondary islands and (up to tearing unstable) current sheets in which non-thermal energy distributions are expected to develop. Using the recently developed particle module of our open-source grid-adaptive mpi-amrvac software, we simulate MHD evolution combined with test particle treatments in MHD snapshots. We explore under which plasma-β conditions the fastest reconnection occurs in 2.5D scenarios, and in these settings, test particles are evolved. We quantify energy distributions, acceleration mechanisms, relativistic corrections to the particle equations of motion and effects of resistivity in magnetically dominated proton-electron plasmas. Due to large resistive electric fields and indefinite acceleration of particles in the infinitely long current channels, hard energy spectra are found in 2.5D configurations. Solutions to these numerical artefacts are proposed for both 2.5D setups and future 3D work. We discuss the MHD of an additional kink instability in 3D setups and the expected effects on energy distributions. The obtained results hold as a proof-of-principle for test particle approaches in MHD simulations, relevant to explore less idealized scenarios like solar flares and more exotic astrophysical phenomena, like black hole flares, magnetar magnetospheres and pulsar wind nebulae.

  12. Gyrokinetic Studies of Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pueschel, Moritz J.; Jenko, Frank; Told, Daniel; Buechner, Joerg

    2011-10-01

    Collisionless magnetic reconnection constitutes an effective mechanism for particle acceleration in astrophysical plasmas, in particular the solar corona. In addition, it is also of relevance to fusion experiments. Gyrokinetic simulations with the GENE code are performed to explore the temporal evolution of current sheets in two-dimensional slab geometry with a strong guide field. After successful code-code benchmarking, Extensive parameter studies are performed, covering a wide range of physical scenarios. In particular, differing findings regarding the influence of the ion temperature are explained. In its nonlinear phase, the characteristics of the reconnection process depend on whether the system is driven or decaying. Decaying turbulence sees an inverse cascade, and all energy is ultimately transferred to the largest radial scale. If driven by a Krook-type term, the system develops into a turbulent, quasi-stationary state. An important quantity to investigate in nonlinear simulations is the parallel electric field which is able to accelerate particles along the background magnetic field. The spatial structure of this field is studied for the different nonlinear cases, and its amplitude reported as a function of the drive frequency.

  13. Turbulent Deflagrated Flame Interaction with a Fluidic Jet Flow for Deflagration-to-Detonation Flame Acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chambers, Jessica; McGarry, Joseph; Ahmed, Kareem

    2015-11-01

    Detonation is a high energetic mode of pressure gain combustion. Detonation combustion exploits the pressure rise to augment high flow momentum and thermodynamic cycle efficiencies. The driving mechanism of deflagrated flame acceleration to detonation is turbulence generation and induction. A fluidic jet is an innovative method for the production of turbulence intensities and flame acceleration. Compared to traditional obstacles, the jet reduces the pressure losses and heat soak effects while providing turbulence generation control. The investigation characterizes the turbulent flame-flow interactions. The focus of the study is on classifying the turbulent flame dynamics and the temporal evolution of turbulent flame regime. The turbulent flame-flow interactions are experimentally studied using a LEGO Detonation facility. Advanced high-speed laser diagnostics, particle image velocimetry (PIV), planar laser induced florescence (PLIF), and Schlieren imaging are used in analyzing the physics of the interaction and flame acceleration. Higher turbulence induction is observed within the turbulent flame after contact with the jet, leading to increased flame burning rates. The interaction with the fluidic jet results in turbulent flame transition from the thin reaction zones to the broken reaction regime.

  14. On the Connection between Turbulent Motions and Particle Acceleration in Galaxy Clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eckert, D.; Gaspari, M.; Vazza, F.; Gastaldello, F.; Tramacere, A.; Zimmer, S.; Ettori, S.; Paltani, S.

    2017-07-01

    Giant radio halos are megaparsec-scale diffuse radio sources associated with the central regions of galaxy clusters. The most promising scenario to explain the origin of these sources is that of turbulent re-acceleration, in which MeV electrons injected throughout the formation history of galaxy clusters are accelerated to higher energies by turbulent motions mostly induced by cluster mergers. In this Letter, we use the amplitude of density fluctuations in the intracluster medium as a proxy for the turbulent velocity and apply this technique to a sample of 51 clusters with available radio data. Our results indicate a segregation in the turbulent velocity of radio halo and radio quiet clusters, with the turbulent velocity of the former being on average higher by about a factor of two. The velocity dispersion recovered with this technique correlates with the measured radio power through the relation {P}{radio}\\propto {σ }v3.3+/- 0.7, which implies that the radio power is nearly proportional to the turbulent energy rate. In case turbulence cascades without being dissipated down to the particle acceleration scales, our results provide an observational confirmation of a key prediction of the turbulent re-acceleration model and possibly shed light on the origin of radio halos.

  15. Mechanism for skin friction reduction in temporally accelerated turbulent pipe flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Jae Hwa; Adrian, Ronald J.

    2013-11-01

    Direct numerical simulations of temporally accelerating turbulent pipe flow are performed to examine the modification of the coherent structures due to acceleration and its relationship to the reduction of turbulent skin friction. Two types of simulations are performed: a) fully developed turbulent flow subjected to constant mean acceleration, and b) evolution of a single hairpin eddy subjected to the same acceleration. The initial eddies are extracted by conditional averaged flow fields associated with second-quadrant Reynolds shear stress events from DNS data of the fully developed turbulent pipe flow at the initial Reynolds number. In the case of fully turbulent initial flow, the temporal acceleration increases the Reynolds number from ReD = 5,300 to 26,500, and the response of the turbulence is found to be delayed relative to the response of the mean flow, as also reported by previous studies. The delay causes the ratio of velocity induced by the hairpin to the mean velocity to decrease below the threshold value for nonlinear formation of new hairpin vortices from the initial hairpin. The autogeneration of new hairpin vortices is suppressed, resulting in reduction of turbulent transport and, consequently, reduction of skin friction. This research was supported by NSF-CBET Award 1335731.

  16. Micro-bubbles and Micro-particles are Not Faithful Tracers of Turbulent Acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Chao; Mathai, Varghese; Calzavarini, Enrico; Brons, Jon; Lohse, Detlef

    2016-11-01

    We report on the Lagrangian statistics of acceleration of small (sub-Kolmogorov) bubbles and tracer particles with Stokes number St <<1 in turbulent flow. At decreasing Reynolds number, the bubble accelerations show deviations from that of tracer particles, i.e. they deviate from the Heisenberg-Yaglom prediction and show a quicker decorrelation despite their small size and minute St. Using direct numerical simulations, we show that these effects arise due the drift of these particles through the turbulent flow. We theoretically predict this gravity-driven effect for developed isotropic turbulence, with the ratio of Stokes to Froude number or equivalently the particle drift-velocity governing the enhancement of acceleration variance and the reductions in correlation time and intermittency. Our predictions are in good agreement with experimental and numerical results. The present findings are relevant to a range of scenarios encompassing tiny bubbles and droplets that drift through the turbulent oceans and the atmosphere.

  17. Vorticity, turbulence production, and turbulence induced accelerations in a rectangular jet as measured using 3-D LDA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morrison, Gerald L.; Swan, David H.

    1990-01-01

    The flow field of a rectangular jet with a 4:1 aspect ratio (50.4 x 12.7 mm) was studied at a Reynolds number of 100,000 (Mach number 0.09) using a 3-D laser Doppler anemometer system. Measurements were performed along the major and minor axis planes and at various downstream cross-sections of the jet. The mean velocity vector and entire Reynolds stress tensor were measured and presented in a previous publication. The present work presents the vorticity vector, turbulence production, and turbulence induced acceleration vector distributions which were calculated from the previously presented data.

  18. Magnetic reconnection process in accretion disk systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piovezan, P.; de Gouveia Dal Pino, E. M.

    2009-08-01

    At the present study, we investigate the role of magnetic reconnection in three different astrophysical systems, namely young stellar objects (YSO's), microquasars, and active galactic nuclei (AGN's). In the case of microquasars and AGN's, violent reconnection episodes between the magnetic field lines of the inner disk region (which are established by a turbulent dynamo) and those anchored into the black hole are able to heat the coronal/disk gas and accelerate particles to relativistic velocities through a diffusive first-order Fermi-like process within the reconnection site that will produce relativistic blobs. The heating of the coronal/disk gas is able to produce a steep X-ray spectrum with a luminosity that is consistent with the observations and we argue that it is being produced mainly at the foot of the reconnection zone, while the Fermi-like acceleration process within the reconnection site results a power-law electron distribution with N(E) ∝ E-α, with α=5/2, and a corresponding synchrotron radio power-law spectrum with a spectral index that is compatible with that observed during the radio flares in microquasars (Sν ∝ ν-0.75). The scaling laws that we derive for AGN's indicate that the same mechanism may be occurring there. Finally, in the case of the YSO's, a similar magnetic configuration can be reached. The amount of magnetic energy that can be extracted from the inner disk region can heat the coronal gas to temperatures of the order of 10^8 K and could explain the observed X-ray flaring emission.

  19. Hall MHD Stability and Turbulence in Magnetically Accelerated Plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    H. R. Strauss

    2012-11-27

    The object of the research was to develop theory and carry out simulations of the Z pinch and plasma opening switch (POS), and compare with experimental results. In the case of the Z pinch, there was experimental evidence of ion kinetic energy greatly in excess of the ion thermal energy. It was thought that this was perhaps due to fine scale turbulence. The simulations showed that the ion energy was predominantly laminar, not turbulent. Preliminary studies of a new Z pinch experiment with an axial magnetic field were carried out. The axial magnetic is relevant to magneto - inertial fusion. These studies indicate the axial magnetic field makes the Z pinch more turbulent. Results were also obtained on Hall magnetohydrodynamic instability of the POS.

  20. Turbulence Evolution and Shock Acceleration of Solar Energetic Particles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chee, Ng K.

    2007-01-01

    We model the effects of self-excitation/damping and shock transmission of Alfven waves on solar-energetic-particle (SEP) acceleration at a coronal-mass-ejection (CME) driven parallel shock. SEP-excited outward upstream waves speedily bootstrap acceleration. Shock transmission further raises the SEP-excited wave intensities at high wavenumbers but lowers them at low wavenumbers through wavenumber shift. Downstream, SEP excitation of inward waves and damping of outward waves tend to slow acceleration. Nevertheless, > 2000 km/s parallel shocks at approx. 3.5 solar radii can accelerate SEPs to 100 MeV in < 5 minutes.

  1. A MAGNETIC RECONNECTION ORIGIN FOR THE SOFT X-RAY EXCESS IN AN ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEUS

    SciTech Connect

    Zhong Xiaogu; Wang Jiancheng

    2013-08-10

    We present a new scenario to explain the soft X-ray excess in an active galactic nucleus (AGN). Magnetic reconnection could happen in a thin layer on the surface of an accretion disk. Electrons are accelerated by a shock wave and turbulence is triggered by magnetic reconnection. Inverse Compton scattering then takes place above the accretion disk, producing soft X-rays. Based on the standard disk model, we estimate the magnetic field strength and the energy released by magnetic reconnection along the accretion disk and find that the luminosity arising from magnetic reconnection is mostly emitted in the inner disk, which is dominated by radiation pressure. We then apply the model to fit the spectra of AGNs with strong soft X-ray excess.

  2. Measurements in Transitional Boundary Layers Under High Free-Stream Turbulence and Strong Acceleration Conditions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Volino, Ralph J.; Simon, Terrence W.

    1995-01-01

    Measurements from transitional, heated boundary layers along a concave-curved test wall are presented and discussed. A boundary layer subject to low free-stream turbulence intensity (FSTI), which contains stationary streamwise (Gortler) vortices, is documented. The low FSTI measurements are followed by measurements in boundary layers subject to high (initially 8%) free-stream turbulence intensity and moderate to strong streamwise acceleration. Conditions were chosen to simulate those present on the downstream half of the pressure side of a gas turbine airfoil. Mean flow characteristics as well as turbulence statistics, including the turbulent shear stress, turbulent heat flux, and turbulent Prandtl number, are documented. A technique called "octant analysis" is introduced and applied to several cases from the literature as well as to data from the present study. Spectral analysis was applied to describe the effects of turbulence scales of different sizes during transition. To the authors'knowledge, this is the first detailed documentation of boundary layer transition under such high free-stream turbulence conditions.

  3. Turbulence and particle acceleration in giant radio haloes: the origin of seed electrons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinzke, Anders; Oh, S. Peng; Pfrommer, Christoph

    2017-03-01

    About one-third of X-ray-luminous clusters show smooth, Mpc-scale radio emission, known as giant radio haloes. One promising model for radio haloes is Fermi-II acceleration of seed relativistic electrons by compressible turbulence. The origin of these seed electrons has never been fully explored. Here, we integrate the Fokker-Planck equation of the cosmic ray (CR) electron and proton distributions when post-processing cosmological simulations of cluster formation and confront them with radio surface brightness and spectral data of Coma. For standard assumptions, structure formation shocks lead to a seed electron population that produces too centrally concentrated radio emission. Matching observations requires modifying properties of the CR population (rapid streaming; enhanced CR electron acceleration at shocks) or turbulence (increasing turbulent-to-thermal energy density with radius), but at the expense of fine-tuning. In a parameter study, we find that radio properties are exponentially sensitive to the amplitude of turbulence, which is inconsistent with small scatter in scaling relations. This sensitivity is removed if we relate the acceleration time to the turbulent dissipation time. In this case, turbulence above a threshold value provides a fixed amount of amplification; observations could thus potentially constrain the unknown CR seed population. To obtain sufficient acceleration, the turbulent magneto-hydrodynamics cascade has to terminate by transit time damping on CRs, i.e. thermal particles must be scattered by plasma instabilities. Understanding the small scatter in radio halo scaling relations may provide a rich source of insight on plasma processes in clusters.

  4. Turbulent thermal boundary layers subjected to severe acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Araya, Guillermo; Castillo, Luciano

    2013-11-01

    Favorable turbulent boundary layers are flows of great importance in industry. Particularly, understanding the mechanisms of quasi-laminarization by means of a very strong favorable streamwise pressure gradient is indeed crucial in drag reduction and energy management applications. Furthermore, due to the low Reynolds numbers involved in the quasi-laminarization process, abundant experimental investigation can be found in the literature for the past few decades. However, several grey zones still remain unsolved, principally associated with the difficulties that experiments encounter as the boundary layer becomes smaller. In addition, little attention has been paid to the heat transfer in a quasi-laminarization process. In this investigation, DNS of spatially-developing turbulent thermal boundary layers with prescribed very strong favorable pressure gradients (K = 4 × 10-6) are performed. Realistic inflow conditions are prescribed based on the Dynamic Multi-scale Approach (DMA) [Araya et al. JFM, Vol. 670, pp. 581-605, 2011]. In this sense the flow carries the footprint of turbulence, particularly in the streamwise component of the Reynolds stresses.

  5. Graphics Processing Unit Acceleration of Gyrokinetic Turbulence Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hause, Benjamin; Parker, Scott

    2012-10-01

    We find a substantial increase in on-node performance using Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) acceleration in gyrokinetic delta-f particle-in-cell simulation. Optimization is performed on a two-dimensional slab gyrokinetic particle simulation using the Portland Group Fortran compiler with the GPU accelerator compiler directives. We have implemented the GPU acceleration on a Core I7 gaming PC with a NVIDIA GTX 580 GPU. We find comparable, or better, acceleration relative to the NERSC DIRAC cluster with the NVIDIA Tesla C2050 computing processor. The Tesla C 2050 is about 2.6 times more expensive than the GTX 580 gaming GPU. Optimization strategies and comparisons between DIRAC and the gaming PC will be presented. We will also discuss progress on optimizing the comprehensive three dimensional general geometry GEM code.

  6. Aerosol removal and cloud collapse accelerated by supersaturation fluctuations in turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chandrakar, K. K.; Cantrell, W.; Ciochetto, D.; Karki, S.; Kinney, G.; Shaw, R. A.

    2017-05-01

    Prior observations have documented the process of cloud cleansing, through which cloudy, polluted air from a continent is slowly transformed into cloudy, clean air typical of a maritime environment. During that process, cloud albedo changes gradually, followed by a sudden reduction in cloud fraction and albedo as drizzle forms and convection changes from closed to open cellular. Experiments in a cloud chamber that generates a turbulent environment show a similar cloud cleansing process followed by rapid cloud collapse. Observations of (1) cloud droplet size distribution, (2) interstitial aerosol size distribution, (3) cloud droplet residual size distribution, and (4) water vapor supersaturation are all consistent with the hypothesis that turbulent fluctuations of supersaturation accelerate the cloud cleansing process and eventual cloud collapse. Decay of the interstitial aerosol concentration occurs slowly at first then more rapidly. The accelerated cleansing occurs when the cloud phase relaxation time exceeds the turbulence correlation time.

  7. Acceleration of heavy and light particles in turbulence: Comparison between experiments and direct numerical simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Volk, R.; Calzavarini, E.; Verhille, G.; Lohse, D.; Mordant, N.; Pinton, J.-F.; Toschi, F.

    2008-08-01

    We compare experimental data and numerical simulations for the dynamics of inertial particles with finite density in turbulence. In the experiment, bubbles and solid particles are optically tracked in a turbulent flow of water using an Extended Laser Doppler Velocimetry technique. The probability density functions (PDF) of particle accelerations and their auto-correlation in time are computed. Numerical results are obtained from a direct numerical simulation in which a suspension of passive pointwise particles is tracked, with the same finite density and the same response time as in the experiment. We observe a good agreement for both the variance of acceleration and the autocorrelation time scale of the dynamics; small discrepancies on the shape of the acceleration PDF are observed. We discuss the effects induced by the finite size of the particles, not taken into account in the present numerical simulations.

  8. Computed lateral rate and acceleration power spectral response of conventional and STOL airplanes to atmospheric turbulence

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lichtenstein, J. H.

    1975-01-01

    Power-spectral-density calculations were made of the lateral responses to atmospheric turbulence for several conventional and short take-off and landing (STOL) airplanes. The turbulence was modeled as three orthogonal velocity components, which were uncorrelated, and each was represented with a one-dimensional power spectrum. Power spectral densities were computed for displacements, rates, and accelerations in roll, yaw, and sideslip. In addition, the power spectral density of the transverse acceleration was computed. Evaluation of ride quality based on a specific ride quality criterion was also made. The results show that the STOL airplanes generally had larger values for the rate and acceleration power spectra (and, consequently, larger corresponding root-mean-square values) than the conventional airplanes. The ride quality criterion gave poorer ratings to the STOL airplanes than to the conventional airplanes.

  9. Direct numerical simulation of turbulence using GPU accelerated supercomputers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khajeh-Saeed, Ali; Blair Perot, J.

    2013-02-01

    Direct numerical simulations of turbulence are optimized for up to 192 graphics processors. The results from two large GPU clusters are compared to the performance of corresponding CPU clusters. A number of important algorithm changes are necessary to access the full computational power of graphics processors and these adaptations are discussed. It is shown that the handling of subdomain communication becomes even more critical when using GPU based supercomputers. The potential for overlap of MPI communication with GPU computation is analyzed and then optimized. Detailed timings reveal that the internal calculations are now so efficient that the operations related to MPI communication are the primary scaling bottleneck at all but the very largest problem sizes that can fit on the hardware. This work gives a glimpse of the CFD performance issues will dominate many hardware platform in the near future.

  10. Graphics Processing Unit Acceleration of Gyrokinetic Turbulence Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hause, Benjamin; Parker, Scott; Chen, Yang

    2013-10-01

    We find a substantial increase in on-node performance using Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) acceleration in gyrokinetic delta-f particle-in-cell simulation. Optimization is performed on a two-dimensional slab gyrokinetic particle simulation using the Portland Group Fortran compiler with the OpenACC compiler directives and Fortran CUDA. Mixed implementation of both Open-ACC and CUDA is demonstrated. CUDA is required for optimizing the particle deposition algorithm. We have implemented the GPU acceleration on a third generation Core I7 gaming PC with two NVIDIA GTX 680 GPUs. We find comparable, or better, acceleration relative to the NERSC DIRAC cluster with the NVIDIA Tesla C2050 computing processor. The Tesla C 2050 is about 2.6 times more expensive than the GTX 580 gaming GPU. We also see enormous speedups (10 or more) on the Titan supercomputer at Oak Ridge with Kepler K20 GPUs. Results show speed-ups comparable or better than that of OpenMP models utilizing multiple cores. The use of hybrid OpenACC, CUDA Fortran, and MPI models across many nodes will also be discussed. Optimization strategies will be presented. We will discuss progress on optimizing the comprehensive three dimensional general geometry GEM code.

  11. Investigation of turbulent Prandtl number subject to local acceleration and deceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jung, Eunbeom; Lee, Wook; Kang, Seongwon; Iaccarino, Gianluca

    2016-11-01

    The main objective of the present study is to analyze the turbulent Prandtl number (Prt) varying over space in a wall-bounded turbulent flow under local acceleration and deceleration. The Prt shows the opposite trends for the conditions of acceleration and deceleration. In order to explain these phenomena, the convection velocity from the space-time correlation is investigated. It is shown that small-scale motions experience larger acceleration and deceleration compared to large-scale ones. Also, a discrepancy between the momentum and heat transfer at small scales results in the spatially varying Prt. The budgets of the turbulent kinetic energy and temperature variance show a hint for the variation of Prt. The results from DNS and RANS with a constant Prt are compared and show that RANS prediction can be improved by using a modeled Prt. From the turbulent statistics, a few flow variables showing higher correlations with Prt are identified. Based on this, simple phenomenological models are devised and the corresponding simulations show a more accurate prediction of the heat transfer rate. Corresponding author.

  12. Solar flares: an extremum of reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Colgate, S.A.

    1983-12-22

    Three points are emphasized: that the solar flare is that particular astrophysical phenomenon that is the extremum of reconnection, no other phenomenon demands as rapid magnetic flux annihilation as is seen in the solar flare; that plasma physics experiments can and should be performed in the laboratory that model reconnection as we observe it in astrophysics; and that stochastic field lines derived from something similar to Alfven wave turbulence are a necessary part of reconnection.

  13. Collisions of Small Drops in a Turbulent Flow. Part II: Effects of Flow Accelerations.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinsky, M. B.; Khain, A. P.

    2004-08-01

    The effects of Lagrangian acceleration on collision efficiency and collision kernels of small cloud droplets in a turbulent flow are investigated using the results of the recent laboratory experiments by La Porta et al., conducted under high Reλ flow of pronounced intermittency. The effect of Lagrangian accelerations on drop collisions has been found to be significant, namely, for drop pairs, containing a drop collector exceeding 10 μm in radius, collision efficiency, and collision kernels increase by up to 25% and 40%, respectively, at dissipation rates of 200 cm2 s-3 typical of weak cumulus clouds. In well-developed deep cumulus clouds, the increase attains the factor of 2.5 and 5, respectively, at typical dissipation rates of 1000 cm2 s-3. The effect of Lagrangian accelerations is mainly caused by the increase in the collision efficiency that is highly sensitive even to weak variations of interdrop relative velocity. The increase in the swept volume is responsible only for a fraction of the overall increase in the collision kernel.The effect of intermittency of a turbulent flow manifests itself in two aspects: (i) an increase in variance of Lagrangian accelerations with an increase in Reλ, and (ii) the formation of a specific shape of the probability distribution function (PDF) characterized by a sharp maximum and elongated tail. The increase in variance of Lagrangian accelerations leads to an increase in the collision rate between droplets. The effect of the PDF shape on the collision rate is studied by comparing the magnitudes of collision efficiencies (and kernels) obtained in case of the non-Gaussian PDF with those obtained using the Gaussian PDF of the same acceleration variation. The utilization of the Gaussian PDF leads to a slight (about 10% 15%) overestimation of the values of the collision efficiency and collision kernel. Thus, the effect of intermittency on drop collisions related to high values of PDF flatness has been found to be insignificant

  14. The Small-Scale Structure of Acceleration in Wall Turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christensen, Kenneth T.; Adrian, Ronald J.

    2001-11-01

    Temporal and convective derivatives of velocity are measured in the streamwise--wall-normal plane of turbulent channel flow at Re_τ=547, 1133, and 1734 using a new technique called particle-image accelerometry. Pairs of temporally-resolved instantaneous velocity fields are acquired in rapid succession using a two-CCD-camera arrangement, and the associated instantaneous temporal and convective derivatives of velocity are computed numerically from this data. Advection of the small-scale vortices embedded within the flow dominates the small-scale behavior of the velocity time-derivative as noted in both the instantaneous rate-of-change fields as well as in the statistics of the temporal derivative. However, in a reference frame traveling with the vortices, a marked deceleration is present and represents the evolution of the flow. This large-scale deceleration is conjectured to be the dynamic influence of larger-scale vortices present further away from the wall on the smaller scale vortices present closer to the wall.

  15. Numerical simulations of Rayleigh-Taylor (RT) turbulence with complex acceleration history

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramaprabhu, Praveen; Dimonte, Guy; Andrews, Malcolm

    2007-11-01

    Complex acceleration histories of an RT unstable interface are important in validating turbulent mix models. Of particular interest are alternating stages of acceleration and deceleration, since the the associated demixing is a discriminating test of such models. We have performed numerical simulations of a turbulent RT mixing layer subjected to two stages of acceleration separated by a stage of deceleration. The profile was chosen from earlier Linear Electric Motor experiments with which we compare our results. The acceleration phases produce classical RT unstable growth (t^2) with growth rates comparable to earlier results of turbulent RT simulations. The calculations are challenging as dominant bubbles become shredded as they reverse direction in response to the reversal in g, placing increased demands on numerical resolution. The shredding to small scales is accompanied by a peaking of the molecular mixing during the RT stable stage. In general, we find that simulations agree with experiments when initialized with broadband initial perturbations, but not for an annular shell. Other effects such as the presence of surface tension in the LEM experiments (but not in our simulations) further complicate this picture.

  16. Heating and acceleration of solar wind ions by turbulent wave spectrum in inhomogeneous expanding plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Ofman, Leon; Ozak, Nataly; Viñas, Adolfo F.

    2016-03-25

    Near the Sun (< 10R{sub s}) the acceleration, heating, and propagation of the solar wind are likely affected by the background inhomogeneities of the magnetized plasma. The heating and the acceleration of the solar wind ions by turbulent wave spectrum in inhomogeneous plasma is studied using a 2.5D hybrid model. The hybrid model describes the kinetics of the ions, while the electrons are modeled as massless neutralizing fluid in an expanding box approach. Turbulent magnetic fluctuations dominated by power-law frequency spectra, which are evident from in-situ as well as remote sensing measurements, are used in our models. The effects of background density inhomogeneity across the magnetic field on the resonant ion heating are studied. The effect of super-Alfvénic ion drift on the ion heating is investigated. It is found that the turbulent wave spectrum of initially parallel propagating waves cascades to oblique modes, and leads to enhanced resonant ion heating due to the inhomogeneity. The acceleration of the solar wind ions is achieved by the parametric instability of large amplitude waves in the spectrum, and is also affected by the inhomogeneity. The results of the study provide the ion temperature anisotropy and drift velocity temporal evolution due to relaxation of the instability. The non-Maxwellian velocity distribution functions (VDFs) of the ions are modeled in the inhomogeneous solar wind plasma in the acceleration region close to the Sun.

  17. Heating and Acceleration of Solar Wind Ions by Turbulent Wave Spectrum in Inhomogeneous Expanding Plasma

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ofman, Leon; Ozak, Nataly; Vinas, Adolfo F.

    2016-01-01

    Near the Sun (< 10Rs) the acceleration, heating, and propagation of the solar wind are likely affected by the background inhomogeneities of the magnetized plasma. The heating and the acceleration of the solar wind ions by turbulent wave spectrum in inhomogeneous plasma is studied using a 2.5D hybrid model. The hybrid model describes the kinetics of the ions, while the electrons are modeled as massless neutralizing fluid in an expanding box approach. Turbulent magnetic fluctuations dominated by power-law frequency spectra, which are evident from in-situ as well as remote sensing measurements, are used in our models. The effects of background density inhomogeneity across the magnetic field on the resonant ion heating are studied. The effect of super- Alfvenic ion drift on the ion heating is investigated. It is found that the turbulent wave spectrum of initially parallel propagating waves cascades to oblique modes, and leads to enhanced resonant ion heating due to the inhomogeneity. The acceleration of the solar wind ions is achieved by the parametric instability of large amplitude waves in the spectrum, and is also affected by the inhomogeneity. The results of the study provide the ion temperature anisotropy and drift velocity temporal evolution due to relaxation of the instability. The non-Maxwellian velocity distribution functions (VDFs) of the ions are modeled in the inhomogeneous solar wind plasma in the acceleration region close to the Sun.

  18. Turbulence Hazard Metric Based on Peak Accelerations for Jetliner Passengers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stewart, Eric C.

    2005-01-01

    Calculations are made of the approximate hazard due to peak normal accelerations of an airplane flying through a simulated vertical wind field associated with a convective frontal system. The calculations are based on a hazard metric developed from a systematic application of a generic math model to 1-cosine discrete gusts of various amplitudes and gust lengths. The math model simulates the three degree-of- freedom longitudinal rigid body motion to vertical gusts and includes (1) fuselage flexibility, (2) the lag in the downwash from the wing to the tail, (3) gradual lift effects, (4) a simplified autopilot, and (5) motion of an unrestrained passenger in the rear cabin. Airplane and passenger response contours are calculated for a matrix of gust amplitudes and gust lengths. The airplane response contours are used to develop an approximate hazard metric of peak normal accelerations as a function of gust amplitude and gust length. The hazard metric is then applied to a two-dimensional simulated vertical wind field of a convective frontal system. The variations of the hazard metric with gust length and airplane heading are demonstrated.

  19. Double Layers Throughout the Magnetosphere and Their Relation to Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goodrich, Katherine; Ergun, Robert; Wilder, Frederick; Ahmadi, Narges; Khotyaintsev, Yuri; Lindqvist, Per-Arne; Torbert, Roy; Argall, Matthew; Le Contel, Olivier; Russell, Christopher; Strangeway, Robert; Giles, Barbara; Burch, James

    2017-04-01

    Observations throughout the terrestrial magnetosphere have shown large-amplitude parallel electric field signatures in regions of strong magnetic turbulence. Debye-length, unipolar parallel electric fields identified as double layers have consistently been observed in regions such as the auroral acceleration region, near-Earth plasmasheet, and in the terrestrial bow shock. Double layers have been theorized to be a dissipation mechanism for magnetic turbulence. Recent observations from MMS have suggested that double layers can act as a signature of secondary magnetic reconnection, particularly in the Earth's magnetopause. We present a comparative study of double layer signatures in various regions of the Earth's magnetosphere to determine the relationship between secondary magnetic reconnection and turbulent dissipation.

  20. Vortex reconnections between coreless vortices in binary condensates

    SciTech Connect

    Gautam, S.; Suthar, K.; Angom, D.

    2014-02-11

    Vortex reconnections plays an important role in the turbulent flows associated with the superfluids. To understand the dynamics, we examine the reconnections of vortex rings in the superfluids of dilute atomic gases confined in trapping potentials using Gross-Petaevskii equation. Further more we study the reconnection dynamics of coreless vortex rings, where one of the species can act as a tracer.

  1. The Non-linear Evolution of Whistler-mode Waves at the Dayside Magnetopause and Its Relation to Magnetic Reconnection and Particle Acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilder, F. D.; Ergun, R.; Goodrich, K.; Newman, D. L.; Goldman, M. V.; Schwartz, S. J.; Jaynes, A. N.; Holmes, J.; Sturner, A. P.; Eriksson, S.; Burch, J. L.; Torbert, R. B.; Phan, T.; Argall, M. R.; Le Contel, O.; Khotyaintsev, Y. V.; Lindqvist, P. A.; Giles, B. L.; Gershman, D. J.; Strangeway, R. J.; Russell, C. T.; Leonard, T. W.

    2016-12-01

    Whistler-mode waves have been observed at the subsolar magnetopause in association with magnetic reconnection, including near the electron diffusion region (EDR) and near the separatrices. Observations by the Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission have shown oblique whistler-mode waves at the electron edge of the reconnection layer that are coincident with time-domain structures such as double layers and electrostatic solitary waves, as well as intense Langmuir oscillations. Additionally, large amplitude non-linear parallel oscillations often coincide with these waves, and may be the result of interactions between the whistler-mode waves and electron-acoustic waves, similar to what has been observed in the radiation belts. We present results of an investigation by MMS into the non-linear evolution of these whistlers and their effects on the local plasma population. Preliminary results suggest that the waves are less common near EDR candidates than on the separatrices and that, via non-linear parallel electric fields, they contribute to direct acceleration of electrons.

  2. Heating and Acceleration of Charged Particles by Weakly Compressible Magnetohydrodynamic Turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lynn, Jacob William

    We investigate the interaction between low-frequency magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) turbulence and a distribution of charged particles. Understanding this physics is central to understanding the heating of the solar wind, as well as the heating and acceleration of other collisionless plasmas. Our central method is to simulate weakly compressible MHD turbulence using the Athena code, along with a distribution of test particles which feel the electromagnetic fields of the turbulence. We also construct analytic models of transit-time damping (TTD), which results from the mirror force caused by compressible (fast or slow) MHD waves. Standard linear-theory models in the literature require an exact resonance between particle and wave velocities to accelerate particles. The models developed in this thesis go beyond standard linear theory to account for the fact that wave-particle interactions decorrelate over a short time, which allows particles with velocities off resonance to undergo acceleration and velocity diffusion. We use the test particle simulation results to calibrate and distinguish between different models for this velocity diffusion. Test particle heating is larger than the linear theory prediction, due to continued acceleration of particles with velocities off-resonance. We also include an artificial pitch-angle scattering to the test particle motion, representing the effect of high-frequency waves or velocity-space instabilities. For low scattering rates, we find that the scattering enforces isotropy and enhances heating by a modest factor. For much higher scattering rates, the acceleration is instead due to a non-resonant effect, as particles "frozen" into the fluid adiabatically gain and lose energy as eddies expand and contract. Lastly, we generalize our calculations to allow for relativistic test particles. Linear theory predicts that relativistic particles with velocities much higher than the speed of waves comprising the turbulence would undergo no

  3. Experimental Investigation of the Effects of Acceleration on Heat Transfer in the Turbulent Boundary Layer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chakroun, Walid M.; Taylor, Robert P.

    1996-01-01

    The objective of this research was to experimentally investigate the combined effects of freestream acceleration and surface roughness on heat transfer and fluid flow in the turbulent boundary layer. The experiments included a variety of flow conditions ranging from aerodynamically smooth to transitionally rough to fully rough boundary layers with accelerations ranging from moderate to moderately strong. The test surfaces used were a smooth-wall test surface and two rough-wall surfaces which were roughened with 1.27 mm diameter hemispheres spaced 2 and 4 base diameters apart in a staggered array. The measurements consisted of Stanton number distributions, mean temperature profiles, skin friction distributions, mean velocity profiles, turbulence intensity profiles, and Reynolds stress profiles. The Stanton numbers for the rough-wall experiments increased with acceleration. For aerodynamically smooth and transitionally rough boundary layers, the effect of roughness is not seen immediately at the beginning of the accelerated region as it is for fully rough boundary layers; however, as the boundery layer thins under acceleration, the surface becomes relatively rougher resulting in a sharp increase in Stanton number.

  4. Magnetic-Field Amplification and Cosmic-Ray Acceleration in Turbulent MHD Shocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giacalone, Joe

    We address the physics of particle acceleration by collisionless shock waves to energies beyond the knee in the cosmic-ray spectrum by diffusive shock acceleration. An important issue is the maximum energy attainable, which is related to the acceleration rate. For a parallel shock a strong increase in the magnetic field, perhaps due to excitation from the streaming cosmic rays, is required to explain the observed spectrum; whereas nearly perpendicular shocks can readily accelerate particles to the observed energies, even in the absence of such strong magnetic fields because of the reduced diffusion normal to the shock. Related to problem of acceleration, it has recently been reported that the magnetic field in supernova remnants is considerably amplified (to 100's of micro-Gauss). Using new MHD simulations of shocks moving through pre-existing, large-scale, broad-band turbulent density fluctuations we find that downstream of such shocks, the magnetic field is significantly amplified by a process that is essentially independent of the shock-normal angle. The downstream field enhancement can be understood in terms of the stretching and forcing together of magnetic field entrained within the turbulent fluid of the post-shock flow, created by distortions in the shock front imposed by the density fluctuations. We suggest that these effects of the density fluctuations on the magnetic field are observed in astrophysical shock waves such as supernova blast waves.

  5. Probing particle acceleration in lower hybrid turbulence via synthetic diagnostics produced by PIC simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cruz, F.; Fonseca, R. A.; Silva, L. O.; Rigby, A.; Gregori, G.; Bamford, R. A.; Bingham, R.; Koenig, M.

    2016-10-01

    Efficient particle acceleration in astrophysical shocks can only be achieved in the presence of initial high energy particles. A candidate mechanism to provide an initial seed of energetic particles is lower hybrid turbulence (LHT). This type of turbulence is commonly excited in regions where space and astrophysical plasmas interact with large obstacles. Due to the nature of LH waves, energy can be resonantly transferred from ions (travelling perpendicular to the magnetic field) to electrons (travelling parallel to it) and the consequent motion of the latter in turbulent shock electromagnetic fields is believed to be responsible for the observed x-ray fluxes from non-thermal electrons produced in astrophysical shocks. Here we present PIC simulations of plasma flows colliding with magnetized obstacles showing the formation of a bow shock and the consequent development of LHT. The plasma and obstacle parameters are chosen in order to reproduce the results obtained in a recent experiment conducted at the LULI laser facility at Ecole Polytechnique (France) to study accelerated electrons via LHT. The wave and particle spectra are studied and used to produce synthetic diagnostics that show good qualitative agreement with experimental results. Work supported by the European Research Council (Accelerates ERC-2010-AdG 267841).

  6. DEMONSTRATIONS THAT THE SOLAR WIND IS NOT ACCELERATED BY WAVES OR TURBULENCE

    SciTech Connect

    Roberts, D. Aaron

    2010-03-10

    The present work uses observations and theoretical considerations to provide both qualitative and quantitative arguments that hydromagnetic waves, whether turbulent or not, cannot produce the acceleration of the fast solar wind and the related heating of the open solar corona. Waves do exist, and can play a role in the differential heating and acceleration of minor ions, but their amplitudes are not sufficient to power the wind, as demonstrated by extrapolation of magnetic spectra from Helios and Ulysses observations. Dissipation mechanisms invoked to circumvent this conclusion cannot be effective for a variety of reasons. In particular, turbulence does not play a strong role in the corona as shown both by observations of coronal striations and other features, and by theoretical considerations of line tying to a nonturbulent photosphere, nonlocality of interactions, and the nature of the kinetic dissipation. We consider possible 'ways out' of the arguments presented, and suggest that in the absence of wave or turbulent heating and acceleration, the chromosphere and transition region become the natural source, if yet unproven, of open coronal energization through the production of nonthermal particle distributions.

  7. Demonstrations that the Solar Wind is Not Accelerated by Waves or Turbulence

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, D. Aaron

    2010-01-01

    The present work uses observations and theoretical considerations to provide both qualitative and quantitative arguments that hydromagnetic waves, whether turbulent or not, cannot produce the acceleration of the fast solar wind and the related heating of the open solar corona. Waves do exist, and can play a role in the differential heating and acceleration of minor ions, but their amplitudes are not sufficient to power the wind, as demonstrated by extrapolation of magnetic spectra from Helios and Ulysses observations. Dissipation mechanisms invoked to circumvent this conclusion cannot be effective for a variety of reasons. In particular, turbulence does not play a strong role in the corona as shown both by observations of coronal striations and other features, and by theoretical considerations of line-tying to a nonturbulent photosphere, nonlocality of interactions, and the nature of the kinetic dissipation. We consider possible "ways out" of the arguments presented, and suggest that in the absence of wave or turbulent heating and acceleration, the chromosphere and transition region become the natural source, if yet unproven, of open coronal energization through the production of nonthermal particle distributions.

  8. Evolving Waves and Turbulence in the Outer Corona and Inner Heliosphere: The Accelerating Expanding Box

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tenerani, Anna; Velli, Marco

    2017-07-01

    Alfvénic fluctuations in the solar wind display many properties reflecting an ongoing nonlinear cascade, e.g., a well-defined spectrum in frequency, together with some characteristics more commonly associated with the linear propagation of waves from the Sun, such as the variation of fluctuation amplitude with distance, dominated by solar wind expansion effects. Therefore, both nonlinearities and expansion must be included simultaneously in any successful model of solar wind turbulence evolution. Because of the disparate spatial scales involved, direct numerical simulations of turbulence in the solar wind represent an arduous task, especially if one wants to go beyond the incompressible approximation. Indeed, most simulations neglect solar wind expansion effects entirely. Here we develop a numerical model to simulate turbulent fluctuations from the outer corona to 1 au and beyond, including the sub-Alfvénic corona. The accelerating expanding box (AEB) extends the validity of previous expanding box models by taking into account both the acceleration of the solar wind and the inhomogeneity of background density and magnetic field. Our method incorporates a background accelerating wind within a magnetic field that naturally follows the Parker spiral evolution using a two-scale analysis in which the macroscopic spatial effect coupling fluctuations with background gradients becomes a time-dependent coupling term in a homogeneous box. In this paper we describe the AEB model in detail and discuss its main properties, illustrating its validity by studying Alfvén wave propagation across the Alfvén critical point.

  9. Prompt acceleration of ions by oblique turbulent shocks in solar flares

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Decker, R. B.; Vlahos, L.

    1985-01-01

    Solar flares often accelerate ions and electrons to relativistic energies. The details of the acceleration process are not well understood, but until recently the main trend was to divide the acceleration process into two phases. During the first phase elctrons and ions are heated and accelerated up to several hundreds of keV simultaneously with the energy release. These mildly relativistic electrons interact with the ambient plasma and magnetic fields and generate hard X-ray and radio radiation. The second phase, usually delayed from the first by several minutes, is responsible for accelerating ions and electrons to relativistic energies. Relativistic electrons and ions interact with the solar atmosphere or escape from the Sun and generate gamma ray continuum, gamma ray line emission, neutron emission or are detected in space by spacecraft. In several flares the second phase is coincident with the start of a type 2 radio burst that is believed to be the signature of a shock wave. Observations from the Solar Maximum Mission spacecraft have shown, for the first time, that several flares accelerate particles to all energies nearly simultaneously. These results posed a new theoretical problem: How fast are shocks and magnetohydrodynamic turbulence formed and how quickly can they accelerate ions to 50 MeV in the lower corona? This problem is discussed.

  10. Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Image and Video Library

    This science visualization shows a magnetospheric substorm, during which, magnetic reconnection causes energy to be rapidly released along the field lines in the magnetotail, that part of the magne...

  11. Acceleration in astrophysics

    SciTech Connect

    Colgate, S.A.

    1993-12-31

    The origin of cosmic rays and applicable laboratory experiments are discussed. Some of the problems of shock acceleration for the production of cosmic rays are discussed in the context of astrophysical conditions. These are: The presumed unique explanation of the power law spectrum is shown instead to be a universal property of all lossy accelerators; the extraordinary isotropy of cosmic rays and the limited diffusion distances implied by supernova induced shock acceleration requires a more frequent and space-filling source than supernovae; the near perfect adiabaticity of strong hydromagnetic turbulence necessary for reflecting the accelerated particles each doubling in energy roughly 10{sup 5} to {sup 6} scatterings with negligible energy loss seems most unlikely; the evidence for acceleration due to quasi-parallel heliosphere shocks is weak. There is small evidence for the expected strong hydromagnetic turbulence, and instead, only a small number of particles accelerate after only a few shock traversals; the acceleration of electrons in the same collisionless shock that accelerates ions is difficult to reconcile with the theoretical picture of strong hydromagnetic turbulence that reflects the ions. The hydromagnetic turbulence will appear adiabatic to the electrons at their much higher Larmor frequency and so the electrons should not be scattered incoherently as they must be for acceleration. Therefore the electrons must be accelerated by a different mechanism. This is unsatisfactory, because wherever electrons are accelerated these sites, observed in radio emission, may accelerate ions more favorably. The acceleration is coherent provided the reconnection is coherent, in which case the total flux, as for example of collimated radio sources, predicts single charge accelerated energies much greater than observed.

  12. An analysis of spatially varying turbulent Prandtl number in a flow with local acceleration and deceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jung, Eunbum; Lee, Wook; Kang, Seongwon; Iaccarino, Gianluca

    2015-11-01

    The turbulent Prandtl number (Prt) is an important parameter in turbulent flows used in many engineering models for heat transfer. In the present study, spatial variation of Prt in a wall-bounded turbulent flow is investigated using DNS. We derived a form of Prt applicable to a general flow configuration, using the least-square method in a manner consistent with the turbulent viscosity model in LES. For a flow subject to local acceleration and deceleration induced by the wall geometry, we performed a parametric study for the Reynolds number, Prandtl number and a geometric factor using DNS. A comparison of the data from DNS and RANS with a constant Prt indicates the potential of improved RANS predictions using the present variable Prt subject to the local flow field. Also, it is observed that the local pressure gradient has an important effect on the Prt field. From the flow statistics, a few flow variables showing higher correlations with Prt are identified. An elementary model for Prt is devised, and used for RANS prediction producing a more accurate prediction of the heat transfer rate. Corresponding author

  13. Heating and Acceleration of the Solar Corona and Solar Wind: Effects of Turbulence Transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Usmanov, A. V.; Matthaeus, W. H.; Goldstein, M. L.

    2016-12-01

    We present initial results from a fully three-dimensional MHD model of the steady-state solar corona and solar wind in the region from the coronal base to 5 AU. In comparison with our previous studies (Usmanov et al., ApJ, 788, 43, 2014), the model takes into account the turbulence transport and heating in the sub/trans-Alfvenic flow region near the Sun and relaxes the assumption that the Alfven velocity is small in comparison with the flow velocity. The turbulence transport equations are based on the Reynolds decomposition of physical quantities into mean and fluctuating components. The coupled Reynolds-averaged solar wind and turbulence transport equations (for turbulence energy, cross helicity, and correlation length) are solved simultaneously in the corotating with the Sun frame of reference by a time-relaxation method. We specify representative boundary conditions at the coronal base and apply the model to study the heating and acceleration of the solar corona and solar wind plasma emphasizing its three-dimensional properties. We verify the simulation results against Ulysses data.

  14. Ion Temperature Anisotropy across Reconnection Exhaust Jets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hietala, H.; Drake, J. F.; Phan, T. D.; Eastwood, J. P.; McFadden, J. P.

    2014-12-01

    Magnetic reconnection redistributes energy by releasing magnetic energy into plasma kinetic energy - high speed bulk flows, heating, and particle acceleration. In the magnetotail, most of the released energy appears to go into ion heating. However, previous observations and simulations show that this heating is anisotropic with the plasma temperature parallel to the magnetic field generally increasing more than the perpendicular temperature. Simulations and theory indicate that this temperature anisotropy can balance part of the magnetic tension force that accelerates the jet, and may even exceed it leading to firehose instability.Here we report the results of a new study of ion temperature anisotropy in reconnection exhausts generated by anti-parallel reconnection. We have examined ARTEMIS dual-spacecraft observations of long-duration magnetotail exhausts at lunar distances in conjunction with Particle-In-Cell simulations. In particular, we have studied spatial variations in the ion temperature anisotropy across the outflows far away (>100 ion inertial lengths) from the X-line. A consistent pattern is found in both the spacecraft data and the simulations: whilst the total temperature profile across the exhaust is flat, near the exhaust boundaries the parallel temperature dominates. A consequence of this is that firehose threshold is greatly exceeded in a significant fraction of the exhaust. In contrast, the perpendicular temperature dominates at the neutral plane (|BX| < 0.1 B0), indicating that, despite the turbulence and the large distance to the X-line, particles undergo Speiser-like motion (rather than isotropization by scattering). We also analyse the characteristics of the particle distributions leading to these anisotropies at different distances from the mid-plane.

  15. Design of an electromagnetic accelerator for turbulent hydrodynamic mix studies. Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    Susoeff, A.R.; Hawke, R.S.; Morrison, J.J.; Dimonte, G.; Remington, B.A.

    1994-03-01

    An electromagnetic accelerator in the form of a linear electric motor (LEM) has been designed to achieve controlled acceleration profiles of a carriage containing hydrodynamically unstable fluids for the investigation of the development of turbulent mix. Key features of the design include: (1) independent control of acceleration, deceleration and augmentation currents to provide a variety of acceleration-time profiles, (2) a robust support structure to minimized deflection and dampen vibration which could create artifacts in the data interfering with the intended study and (3) a compliant, non-arcing solid armature allowing optimum electrical contact. Electromagnetic modeling codes were used to optimize the rail and augmentation coil positions within the support structure framework. Design of the driving armature and the dynamic electromagnetic braking system is based on results of contemporary studies for non-arcing sliding contact of solid armatures. A 0.6MJ electrolytic capacitor bank is used for energy storage to drive the LEM. This report will discuss a LEM and armature design which will accelerate masses of up to 3kg to a maximum of about 3000g{sub o}, where g{sub o} is acceleration due to gravity.

  16. Ultra High Resolution Particle-In-Cell Simulations of Transition to Turbulence using GPU acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Germaschewski, Kai; Fox, William; Karimabadi, Homa; Roytershteyn, Vadim; Daughton, William

    2012-10-01

    Advances in computing power have enabled kinetic particle-in-cell simulations of plasma transition to turbulence at unprecedent resolutions. Nonlinear Kelvin-Helmholtz and tearing instabilities, driven by an initial shear flow, lead to fully developed turbulence, spanning scales from MHD down to electron kinetic scales. Currently, advances in computational capabilities for some of the largest computers in the world, like DOE's upcoming Titan machine, are driven by the use of graphics processing units (GPUs) to accelerate computationally intensive tasks. We present new modules in the electromagnetic particle-in-cell code PSC that enable effective use of the computational capabilities of massively parallel GPU based computers for kinetic plasma simulations. In particular, we will address (1) efficient algorithms for implementing particle advance, current deposition and sorting, (2) a load balancing scheme based on decomposition into small patches and space-filling curves, and (3) challenges of using both CPU and GPUs simultaneously in order to exploit all available computational resources optimally.

  17. Experimental Evidence for Cerenkov Emission of Whistler Waves by Electron Holes Associated with Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eastwood, J. P.; Goldman, M. V.; Zhang, X.; Hietala, H.; Krupar, V.; Newman, D. L.; Angelopoulos, V.; Lapenta, G.

    2015-12-01

    Whistler waves are a ubiquitous plasma phenomenon, observed in a variety of space and laboratory plasma environments. They play a key role in many important and diverse processes, such as particle acceleration in the radiation belts and auroral acceleration region, the dissipation of plasma turbulence at small scales below the inertial range, collisionless shock physics, and magnetic reconnection. In reconnection they may modify the reconnection rate and also whistler physics is crucial to enabling fast reconnection in the Hall reconnection model. Consequently, understanding how whistler waves are generated and how they subsequently interact with the plasma is a problem of wide importance and application. It is well known that whistlers can arise as a result of kinetic instabilities, which grow exponentially from noise as a consequence of unstable electron distributions, for example temperature anisotropy. This is used ubiquitously to predict where and when whistler waves are likely to exist and therefore be of importance in many plasma phenomena. Recently it has been demonstrated theoretically and via computer simulations that whistler waves may also arise via Cerenkov emission from electron hole quasi-particles [Goldman et al., PRL, 2014]. Such wave emission can arise even when the temperature anisotropy leads to damping; in this case the system is analogous to a damped forced oscillator. Here we present novel experimental analysis from THEMIS showing for the first time evidence consistent with the generation of whistlers via Cerenkov emission during magnetotail reconnection. By considering the electromagnetic properties of the electron holes, the amplitude, phase speed and frequency of the associated whistlers, and also the available sub-spin observations of the electron distribution function, we find that the data are best explained by the Cerenkov emission theory rather than by kinetic instabilities due to the electron temperature anisotropy. Whilst the

  18. Acceleration of electrons and ions by strong lower-hybrid turbulence in solar flares

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spicer, D. S.; Bingham, R.; Su, J. J.; Shapiro, V. D.; Shevchenko, V.; Ma, S.; Dawson, J. M.; Mcclements, K. G.

    1994-01-01

    One of the outstanding problems in solar flare theory is how to explain the 10-20 keV and greater hard x-ray emissions by a thick target bremsstrahlung model. The model requires the acceleration mechanism to accelerate approximately 10(exp 35) electrons sec(exp -l) with comparable energies, without producing a large return current which persists for long time scales after the beam ceases to exist due to Lenz's law, thereby, producing a self-magnetic field of order a few mega-Gauss. In this paper, we investigate particle acceleration resulting from the relaxation of unstable ion ring distributions, producing strong wave activity at the lower hybrid frequency. It is shown that strong lower hybrid wave turbulence collapses in configuration space producing density cavities containing intense electrostatic lower hybrid wave activity. The collapse of these intense nonlinear wave packets saturate by particle acceleration producing energetic electron and ion tails. There are several mechanisms whereby unstable ion distributions could be formed in the solar atmosphere, including reflection at perpendicular shocks, tearing modes, and loss cone depletion. Numerical simulations of ion ring relaxation processes, obtained using a 2 1/2-D fully electromagnetic, relativistic particle in cell code are discussed. We apply the results to the problem of explaining energetic particle production in solar flares. The results show the simultaneous acceleration of both electrons and ions to very high energies: electrons are accelerated to energies in the range 10-500 keV, while ions are accelerated to energies of the order of MeVs, giving rise to x-ray emission and gamma-ray emission respectively. Our simulations also show wave generation at the electron cyclotron frequency. We suggest that these waves are the solar millisecond radio spikes. The strong turbulence collapse process leads to a highly filamented plasma producing many localized regions for particle acceleration and resulting in

  19. Magnetic Reconnection in Solar Flares

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forbes, Terry G.

    2016-05-01

    Reconnection has at least three possible roles in solar flares: First, it may contribute to the build-up of magnetic energy in the solar corona prior to flare onset; second, it may directly trigger the onset of the flare; and third, it may allow the release of magnetic energy by relaxing the magnetic field configuration to a lower energy state. Although observational support for the first two roles is somewhat limited, there is now ample support for the third. Within the last few years EUV and X-ray instruments have directly observed the kind of plasma flows and heating indicative of reconnection. Continued improvements in instrumentation will greatly help to determine the detailed physics of the reconnection process in the solar atmosphere. Careful measurement of the reconnection outflows will be especially helpful in this regard. Current observations suggest that in some flares the jet outflows are accelerated within a short diffusion region that is more characteristic of Petschek-type reconnection than Sweet-Parker reconnection. Recent resistive MHD theoretical and numerical analyses predict that the length of the diffusion region should be just within the resolution range of current X-ray and EUV telescopes if the resistivity is uniform. On the other hand, if the resistivity is not uniform, the length of the diffusion region could be too short for the outflow acceleration region to be observable.

  20. Three-dimensional Spontaneous Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beresnyak, Andrey

    2017-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection is best known from observations of the Sun where it causes solar flares. Observations estimate the reconnection rate as a small, but non-negligible fraction of the Alfvén speed, so-called fast reconnection. Until recently, the prevailing pictures of reconnection were either of resistivity or plasma microscopic effects, which was contradictory to the observed rates. Alternative pictures were either of reconnection due to the stochasticity of magnetic field lines in turbulence or the tearing instability of the thin current sheet. In this paper we simulate long-term three-dimensional nonlinear evolution of a thin, planar current sheet subject to a fast oblique tearing instability using direct numerical simulations of resistive-viscous magnetohydrodynamics. The late-time evolution resembles generic turbulence with a ‑5/3 power spectrum and scale-dependent anisotropy, so we conclude that the tearing-driven reconnection becomes turbulent reconnection. The turbulence is local in scale, so microscopic diffusivity should not affect large-scale quantities. This is confirmed by convergence of the reconnection rate toward ∼ 0.015{v}{{A}} with increasing Lundquist number. In this spontaneous reconnection, with mean field and without driving, the dissipation rate per unit area also converges to ∼ 0.006ρ {v}{{A}}3, and the dimensionless constants 0.015 and 0.006 are governed only by self-driven nonlinear dynamics of the sheared magnetic field. Remarkably, this also means that a thin current sheet has a universal fluid resistance depending only on its length to width ratio and to {v}{{A}}/c.

  1. Mechanisms for fast flare reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vanhoven, G.; Deeds, D.; Tachi, T.

    1988-01-01

    Normal collisional-resistivity mechanisms of magnetic reconnection have the drawback that they are too slow to explain the fast rise of solar flares. Two methods are examined which are proposed for the speed-up of the magnetic tearing instability: the anomalous enhancement of resistivity by the injection of MHD turbulence and the increase of Coulomb resistivity by radiative cooling. The results are described for nonlinear numerical simulations of these processes which show that the first does not provide the claimed effects, while the second yields impressive rates of reconnection, but low saturated energy outputs.

  2. The reconnection gun

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cowan, M.; Cnare, E. C.; Duggin, B. W.; Kaye, R. J.; Tucker, T. J.

    1986-11-01

    An electromagnetic launcher called the reconnection gun is introduced. Its potential performance is shown to be superior to that of a modern railgun for projectiles with mass greater than a few hundred grams. It has a 'characteristic velocity' which is an order of magnitude lower for much lower energy loss to ohmic heating. Also, it has several advantages for producing higher acceleration including; no barrel, no drop in acceleration with increase in projectile mass, higher peak pressure on the projectile and smaller differences between average and peak pressure. Experimental results and plans for high-performance, multi-stage designs are briefly discussed.

  3. An accelerated stochastic vortex structure method for particle collision and agglomeration in homogeneous turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dizaji, Farzad F.; Marshall, Jeffrey S.

    2016-11-01

    Modeling the response of interacting particles, droplets, or bubbles to subgrid-scale fluctuations in turbulent flows is a long-standing challenge in multiphase flow simulations using the Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes approach. The problem also arises for large-eddy simulation for sufficiently small values of the Kolmogorov-scale particle Stokes number. This paper expands on a recently proposed stochastic vortex structure (SVS) method for modeling of turbulence fluctuations for colliding or otherwise interacting particles. An accelerated version of the SVS method was developed using the fast multipole expansion and local Taylor expansion approach, which reduces computation speed by two orders of magnitude compared to the original SVS method. Detailed comparisons are presented showing close agreement of the energy spectrum and probability density functions of various fields between the SVS computational model, direct numerical simulation (DNS) results, and various theoretical and experimental results found in the literature. Results of the SVS method for particle collision rate and related measures of particle interaction exhibit excellent agreement with DNS predictions for homogeneous turbulent flows. The SVS method was also used with adhesive particles to simulate formation of particle agglomerates with different values of the particle Stokes and adhesion numbers, and various measures of the agglomerate structure are compared to the DNS results.

  4. Particle acceleration by combined diffusive shock acceleration and downstream multiple magnetic island acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zank, G. P.; Hunana, P.; Mostafavi, P.; le Roux, J. A.; Li, Gang; Webb, G. M.; Khabarova, O.

    2015-09-01

    As a consequence of the evolutionary conditions [28; 29], shock waves can generate high levels of downstream vortical turbulence. Simulations [32-34] and observations [30; 31] support the idea that downstream magnetic islands (also called plasmoids or flux ropes) result from the interaction of shocks with upstream turbulence. Zank et al. [18] speculated that a combination of diffusive shock acceleration (DSA) and downstream reconnection-related effects associated with the dynamical evolution of a “sea of magnetic islands” would result in the energization of charged particles. Here, we utilize the transport theory [18; 19] for charged particles propagating diffusively in a turbulent region filled with contracting and reconnecting plasmoids and small-scale current sheets to investigate a combined DSA and downstream multiple magnetic island charged particle acceleration mechanism. We consider separately the effects of the anti-reconnection electric field that is a consequence of magnetic island merging [17], and magnetic island contraction [14]. For the merging plasmoid reconnection- induced electric field only, we find i) that the particle spectrum is a power law in particle speed, flatter than that derived from conventional DSA theory, and ii) that the solution is constant downstream of the shock. For downstream plasmoid contraction only, we find that i) the accelerated particle spectrum is a power law in particle speed, flatter than that derived from conventional DSA theory; ii) for a given energy, the particle intensity peaks downstream of the shock, and the peak location occurs further downstream of the shock with increasing particle energy, and iii) the particle intensity amplification for a particular particle energy, f(x, c/c0)/f(0, c/c0), is not 1, as predicted by DSA theory, but increases with increasing particle energy. These predictions can be tested against observations of electrons and ions accelerated at interplanetary shocks and the heliospheric

  5. Lagrangian velocity and acceleration correlations of large inertial particles in a closed turbulent flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Machicoane, Nathanaël; Volk, Romain

    2016-03-01

    We investigate the response of large inertial particle to turbulent fluctuations in an inhomogeneous and anisotropic flow. We conduct a Lagrangian study using particles both heavier and lighter than the surrounding fluid, and whose diameters are comparable to the flow integral scale. Both velocity and acceleration correlation functions are analyzed to compute the Lagrangian integral time and the acceleration time scale of such particles. The knowledge of how size and density affect these time scales is crucial in understanding particle dynamics and may permit stochastic process modelization using two-time models (for instance, Sawford's). As particles are tracked over long times in the quasi-totality of a closed flow, the mean flow influences their behaviour and also biases the velocity time statistics, in particular the velocity correlation functions. By using a method that allows for the computation of turbulent velocity trajectories, we can obtain unbiased Lagrangian integral time. This is particularly useful in accessing the scale separation for such particles and to comparing it to the case of fluid particles in a similar configuration.

  6. Lagrangian velocity and acceleration correlations of large inertial particles in a closed turbulent flow

    SciTech Connect

    Machicoane, Nathanaël; Volk, Romain

    2016-03-15

    We investigate the response of large inertial particle to turbulent fluctuations in an inhomogeneous and anisotropic flow. We conduct a Lagrangian study using particles both heavier and lighter than the surrounding fluid, and whose diameters are comparable to the flow integral scale. Both velocity and acceleration correlation functions are analyzed to compute the Lagrangian integral time and the acceleration time scale of such particles. The knowledge of how size and density affect these time scales is crucial in understanding particle dynamics and may permit stochastic process modelization using two-time models (for instance, Sawford’s). As particles are tracked over long times in the quasi-totality of a closed flow, the mean flow influences their behaviour and also biases the velocity time statistics, in particular the velocity correlation functions. By using a method that allows for the computation of turbulent velocity trajectories, we can obtain unbiased Lagrangian integral time. This is particularly useful in accessing the scale separation for such particles and to comparing it to the case of fluid particles in a similar configuration.

  7. The logarithmic and power law behaviors of the accelerating, turbulent thermal boundary layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castillo, Luciano; Hussain, Fazle

    2017-02-01

    Direct numerical simulation of spatially evolving thermal turbulent boundary layers with strong favorable pressure gradient (FPG) shows that the thermal fluctuation intensity, θ' + and the Reynolds shear stress, u'v'¯+ exhibit a logarithmic behavior spanning the meso-layer (e.g., 50 ≤y+≤170 ). However, the mean thermal profile is not logarithmic even in the zero pressure gradient (ZPG) region; instead, it follows a power law. The maxima of u' 2 ¯+ and v'θ'¯+ change little with the strength of acceleration, while v'+, w'+, and u'v'¯+ continue to decay in the flow direction. Furthermore, θ'+ and u'θ'¯+ surprisingly experience changes from constants in ZPG to sharp rises in the FPG region. Such behavior appears to be due to squashing of the streaks which decreases the streak flank angle below the critical value for "transient growth" generation of streamwise vortices, shutting down production [W. Schoppa and F. Hussain, "Coherent structure generation near-wall turbulence," J. Fluid Mech. 453, 57-108 (2002)]. The streamwise vortices near the wall, although shrink because of stretching, simultaneously, also become weaker as the structures are progressively pushed farther down to the more viscous region near the wall. While the vortical structures decay rapidly in accelerating flows, the thermal field does not—nullifying the myth that both the thermal and velocity fields are similar.

  8. On the compressibility effect in test particle acceleration by magnetohydrodynamic turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    González, C. A.; Dmitruk, P.; Mininni, P. D.; Matthaeus, W. H.

    2016-08-01

    The effect of compressibility in a charged particle energization by magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) fields is studied in the context of test particle simulations. This problem is relevant to the solar wind and the solar corona due to the compressible nature of the flow in those astrophysical scenarios. We consider turbulent electromagnetic fields obtained from direct numerical simulations of the MHD equations with a strong background magnetic field. In order to explore the flow compressibility effect over the particle dynamics, we performed different numerical experiments: an incompressible case and two weak compressible cases with Mach number M = 0.1 and M = 0.25. We analyze the behavior of protons and electrons in those turbulent fields, which are well known to form aligned current sheets in the direction of the guide magnetic field. What we call protons and electrons are test particles with scales comparable to (for protons) and much smaller than (for electrons) the dissipative scale of MHD turbulence, maintaining the correct mass ratio m e / m i . For these test particles, we show that compressibility enhances the efficiency of proton acceleration, and that the energization is caused by perpendicular electric fields generated between currents sheets. On the other hand, electrons remain magnetized and display an almost adiabatic motion, with no effect of compressibility observed. Another set of numerical experiments takes into account two fluid modifications, namely, electric field due to Hall effect and electron pressure gradient. We show that the electron pressure has an important contribution to electron acceleration allowing highly parallel energization. In contrast, no significant effect of these additional terms is observed for the protons.

  9. Electron Jet of Asymmetric Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Khotyaintsev, Yu. V.; Graham, D. B.; Norgren, C.; Eriksson, E.; Li, W.; Johlander, A.; Vaivads, A.; Andre, M.; Pritchett, P. L.; Retino, A.; hide

    2016-01-01

    We present Magnetospheric Multiscale observations of an electron-scale current sheet and electron outflow jet for asymmetric reconnection with guide field at the subsolar magnetopause. The electron jet observed within the reconnection region has an electron Mach number of 0.35 and is associated with electron agyrotropy. The jet is unstable to an electrostatic instability which generates intense waves with E(sub parallel lines) amplitudes reaching up to 300 mV/m and potentials up to 20% of the electron thermal energy. We see evidence of interaction between the waves and the electron beam, leading to quick thermalization of the beam and stabilization of the instability. The wave phase speed is comparable to the ion thermal speed, suggesting that the instability is of Buneman type, and therefore introduces electron-ion drag and leads to braking of the electron flow. Our observations demonstrate that electrostatic turbulence plays an important role in the electron-scale physics of asymmetric reconnection.

  10. Characterizing a Model of Coronal Heating and Solar Wind Acceleration Based on Wave Turbulence.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Downs, C.; Lionello, R.; Mikic, Z.; Linker, J.; Velli, M.

    2014-12-01

    Understanding the nature of coronal heating and solar wind acceleration is a key goal in solar and heliospheric research. While there have been many theoretical advances in both topics, including suggestions that they may be intimately related, the inherent scale coupling and complexity of these phenomena limits our ability to construct models that test them on a fundamental level for realistic solar conditions. At the same time, there is an ever increasing impetus to improve our spaceweather models, and incorporating treatments for these processes that capture their basic features while remaining tractable is an important goal. With this in mind, I will give an overview of our exploration of a wave-turbulence driven (WTD) model for coronal heating and solar wind acceleration based on low-frequency Alfvénic turbulence. Here we attempt to bridge the gap between theory and practical modeling by exploring this model in 1D HD and multi-dimensional MHD contexts. The key questions that we explore are: What properties must the model possess to be a viable model for coronal heating? What is the influence of the magnetic field topology (open, closed, rapidly expanding)? And can we simultaneously capture coronal heating and solar wind acceleration with such a quasi-steady formulation? Our initial results suggest that a WTD based formulation performs adequately for a variety of solar and heliospheric conditions, while significantly reducing the number of free parameters when compared to empirical heating and solar wind models. The challenges, applications, and future prospects of this type of approach will also be discussed.

  11. NUMERICAL TESTS OF FAST RECONNECTION IN WEAKLY STOCHASTIC MAGNETIC FIELDS

    SciTech Connect

    Kowal, Grzegorz; Lazarian, A.; Vishniac, E. T.; Otmianowska-Mazur, K. E-mail: lazarian@astro.wisc.edu E-mail: ethan@mcmaster.ca

    2009-07-20

    We study the effects of turbulence on magnetic reconnection using three-dimensional direct numerical simulations. This is the first attempt to test a model of fast magnetic reconnection in the presence of weak turbulence proposed by Lazarian and Vishniac. This model predicts that weak turbulence, which is generically present in most astrophysical systems, enhances the rate of reconnection by reducing the transverse scale for reconnection events and by allowing many independent flux reconnection events to occur simultaneously. As a result, the reconnection speed becomes independent of Ohmic resistivity and is determined by the magnetic field wandering induced by turbulence. We test the dependence of the reconnection speed on turbulent power, the energy injection scale, and resistivity. We apply the open and experiment with the outflow boundary conditions in our numerical model and discuss the advantages and drawbacks of various setups. To test our results, we also perform simulations of turbulence with the same outflow boundaries but without a large-scale field reversal, thus without large-scale reconnection. To quantify the reconnection speed we use both an intuitive definition, i.e., the speed of the reconnected flux inflow, and a more sophisticated definition based on a formally derived analytical expression. Our results confirm the predictions of the Lazarian and Vishniac model. In particular, we find that the reconnection speed is proportional to the square root of the injected power, as predicted by the model. The dependence on the injection scale for some of our models is a bit weaker than expected, i.e., l{sup 3/4}{sub inj}, compared to the predicted linear dependence on the injection scale, which may require some refinement of the model or may be due to effects such as the finite size of the excitation region, which are not a part of the model. The reconnection speed was found to depend on the expected rate of magnetic field wandering and not on the

  12. On the energization of charged particles by fast magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharma, Rohit; Mitra, Dhrubaditya; Oberoi, Divya

    2017-09-01

    We study the role of turbulence in magnetic reconnection, within the framework of magnetohydrodynamics, using three-dimensional direct numerical simulations. For small turbulent intensity, we find that the reconnection rate obeys Sweet-Parker scaling. For large enough turbulent intensity, reconnection rate departs significantly from Sweet-Parker behaviour, becomes almost a constant as a function of the Lundquist number. We further study energization of test-particles in the same set-up. We find that the speed of the energized particles obeys a Maxwellian distribution, whose variance also obeys Sweet-Parker scaling for small turbulent intensity but depends weakly on the Lundquist number for large turbulent intensity. Furthermore, the variance is found to increase with the strength of the reconnecting magnetic field.

  13. Magnetic reconnection in space plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Gosling, J.; Feldman, W.; Walthour, D.

    1996-04-01

    This is the final report of a three-year, Laboratory-Directed Research and Development (LDRD) project at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). Magnetic reconnection produces fundamental changes in the magnetic field topology of plasmas and leads ultimately to substantial plasma heating and acceleration. The transfer of stored magnetic field energy to the plasma occurs primarily at thin conversion layers that extend outward from the reconnection site. We performed a comparative study of the structure and nature of these conversion layers as observed during reconnection at Earth`s magnetopause and in the geomagnetic tail. Our research utilized plasma and magnetic field data from the Earth-orbiting ISEE satellites during crossings of the conversion layers at the magnetopause and in the geomagnetic tail, as well as data obtained during a long-duration balloon flight in Antarctica and simultaneously from satellites in geosynchronous orbit. We have found that the reconnection layer at the magnetopause usually does not contain a slow mode shock, contrary to earlier theoretical expectations. Through a coordinated analysis of data obtained from balloon altitudes and at geosynchronous orbit, we obtained evidence that reconnection can occur simultaneously in both hemispheres at the magnetopause above the polar caps. The final year of our study was oriented primarily towards the question of determining the magnetic topology of disturbances in the solar wind associated with coronal mass ejections (CMEs) and understanding how that topology is affected by magnetic reconnection occurring near the Sun.

  14. Linear vs. nonlinear acceleration in plasma turbulence. II. Hall–finite-Larmor-radius magnetohydrodynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Ghosh, Sanjoy; Parashar, Tulasi N.

    2015-04-15

    The local k-space ratio of linear and nonlinear accelerations associated with a variety of initial conditions undergoing steady relaxation is investigated for the Hall–finite-Larmor-radius magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) system in the presence of a mean magnetic field. Building on a related study (Paper I) where it was shown that discrepancies exist between describing the global and local characterizations of the pure MHD system with mean magnetic field, we find regions of the Fourier space that are consistently dominated by linear acceleration and other regions that are consistently dominated by nonlinear acceleration, independent of the overall system's description as linear, weakly nonlinear, or turbulent. In general, dynamics within a certain angular range of the mean magnetic field direction are predominantly linear, while dynamics adjacent the Hall scales along the field-parallel direction and dynamics adjacent the finite Larmor radius scales in the field-perpendicular direction can become strongly nonlinear. The nonlinear influences are particularly significant as the plasma beta increases from unity to higher values.

  15. MHD turbulence model for global simulations of the solar wind and SEP acceleration

    SciTech Connect

    Sokolov, Igor V.; Roussev, Ilia I.

    2008-08-25

    The aim of the present work is to unify the various transport equations for turbulent waves that are used in different areas of space physics. We mostly focus on the magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) turbulence, in particular the Alfvenic turbulence.

  16. Anomalous resistivity due to low-frequency turbulence. [of collisionless plasma with limited acceleration of high velocity runaway electrons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rowland, H. L.; Palmadesso, P. J.

    1983-01-01

    Large amplitude ion cyclotron waves have been observed on auroral field lines. In the presence of an electric field parallel to the ambient magnetic field these waves prevent the acceleration of the bulk of the plasma electrons leading to the formation of a runaway tail. It is shown that low-frequency turbulence can also limit the acceleration of high-velocity runaway electrons via pitch angle scattering at the anomalous Doppler resonance.

  17. Electromagnetic theory of turbulent acceleration of parallel flow and momentum conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peng, Shuitao; Wang, Lu

    2017-01-01

    Intrinsic flow in plasma physics is a long-standing puzzle, since it is difficult to understand its origin without contradiction to momentum conservation in conventional wisdom. It is proved that the electromagnetic turbulent acceleration as a candidate for intrinsic parallel flow generation driven by pressure gradient along the total magnetic field line does not contradict the momentum conservation. The conserved quantity corresponding to axial symmetry is the total gyrocenter parallel canonical momentum carried by both species or the total gyrocenter parallel momentum including the ion gyrocenter kinematic momentum and electromagnetic fields momentum, but not the ion kinematic momentum, or even the ion parallel flow. A conservation equation of total parallel momentum including the ion particles' kinematic momentum and electromagnetic fields momentum is also presented.

  18. GPU accelerated flow solver for direct numerical simulation of turbulent flows

    SciTech Connect

    Salvadore, Francesco; Botti, Michela

    2013-02-15

    Graphical processing units (GPUs), characterized by significant computing performance, are nowadays very appealing for the solution of computationally demanding tasks in a wide variety of scientific applications. However, to run on GPUs, existing codes need to be ported and optimized, a procedure which is not yet standardized and may require non trivial efforts, even to high-performance computing specialists. In the present paper we accurately describe the porting to CUDA (Compute Unified Device Architecture) of a finite-difference compressible Navier–Stokes solver, suitable for direct numerical simulation (DNS) of turbulent flows. Porting and validation processes are illustrated in detail, with emphasis on computational strategies and techniques that can be applied to overcome typical bottlenecks arising from the porting of common computational fluid dynamics solvers. We demonstrate that a careful optimization work is crucial to get the highest performance from GPU accelerators. The results show that the overall speedup of one NVIDIA Tesla S2070 GPU is approximately 22 compared with one AMD Opteron 2352 Barcelona chip and 11 compared with one Intel Xeon X5650 Westmere core. The potential of GPU devices in the simulation of unsteady three-dimensional turbulent flows is proved by performing a DNS of a spatially evolving compressible mixing layer.

  19. Multigrid Acceleration of Time-Accurate DNS of Compressible Turbulent Flow

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Broeze, Jan; Geurts, Bernard; Kuerten, Hans; Streng, Martin

    1996-01-01

    An efficient scheme for the direct numerical simulation of 3D transitional and developed turbulent flow is presented. Explicit and implicit time integration schemes for the compressible Navier-Stokes equations are compared. The nonlinear system resulting from the implicit time discretization is solved with an iterative method and accelerated by the application of a multigrid technique. Since we use central spatial discretizations and no artificial dissipation is added to the equations, the smoothing method is less effective than in the more traditional use of multigrid in steady-state calculations. Therefore, a special prolongation method is needed in order to obtain an effective multigrid method. This simulation scheme was studied in detail for compressible flow over a flat plate. In the laminar regime and in the first stages of turbulent flow the implicit method provides a speed-up of a factor 2 relative to the explicit method on a relatively coarse grid. At increased resolution this speed-up is enhanced correspondingly.

  20. GPU accelerated flow solver for direct numerical simulation of turbulent flows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salvadore, Francesco; Bernardini, Matteo; Botti, Michela

    2013-02-01

    Graphical processing units (GPUs), characterized by significant computing performance, are nowadays very appealing for the solution of computationally demanding tasks in a wide variety of scientific applications. However, to run on GPUs, existing codes need to be ported and optimized, a procedure which is not yet standardized and may require non trivial efforts, even to high-performance computing specialists. In the present paper we accurately describe the porting to CUDA (Compute Unified Device Architecture) of a finite-difference compressible Navier-Stokes solver, suitable for direct numerical simulation (DNS) of turbulent flows. Porting and validation processes are illustrated in detail, with emphasis on computational strategies and techniques that can be applied to overcome typical bottlenecks arising from the porting of common computational fluid dynamics solvers. We demonstrate that a careful optimization work is crucial to get the highest performance from GPU accelerators. The results show that the overall speedup of one NVIDIA Tesla S2070 GPU is approximately 22 compared with one AMD Opteron 2352 Barcelona chip and 11 compared with one Intel Xeon X5650 Westmere core. The potential of GPU devices in the simulation of unsteady three-dimensional turbulent flows is proved by performing a DNS of a spatially evolving compressible mixing layer.

  1. Multigrid Acceleration of Time-Accurate DNS of Compressible Turbulent Flow

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Broeze, Jan; Geurts, Bernard; Kuerten, Hans; Streng, Martin

    1996-01-01

    An efficient scheme for the direct numerical simulation of 3D transitional and developed turbulent flow is presented. Explicit and implicit time integration schemes for the compressible Navier-Stokes equations are compared. The nonlinear system resulting from the implicit time discretization is solved with an iterative method and accelerated by the application of a multigrid technique. Since we use central spatial discretizations and no artificial dissipation is added to the equations, the smoothing method is less effective than in the more traditional use of multigrid in steady-state calculations. Therefore, a special prolongation method is needed in order to obtain an effective multigrid method. This simulation scheme was studied in detail for compressible flow over a flat plate. In the laminar regime and in the first stages of turbulent flow the implicit method provides a speed-up of a factor 2 relative to the explicit method on a relatively coarse grid. At increased resolution this speed-up is enhanced correspondingly.

  2. Progress on the Two-Wheel High Acceleration Experiment to Study Rayleigh-Taylor Turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haley, Aaron; Banerjee, Arindam

    2011-11-01

    A new two-wheel experiment, scaled by a factor of 4 from the previously presented proof of concept, is used to study turbulent incompressible Rayleigh-Taylor (RT) instability. Two counter rotating wheels are mounted side by side such that axes of rotation are normal to gravity. A test section containing pairs of either miscible or immiscible fluids is attached to the first wheel and rotated so that a stable stratification is formed. The test section is then transferred to the adjacent wheel using a pneumatically actuated transfer mechanism. RT instability is effected by the inverted density stratification relative to the centrifugal acceleration. Late time RT turbulence at buoyancy Re ~ 230 , 000 is achieved. Details of the mixing layer development and growth constants are captured using high speed backlit imaging. A variety of fluid combinations (immiscible and miscible) are utilized to investigate development of RT mixing over a range of Atwood numbers and results are compared with data available in the literature. Funded by NSF-CBET-Fluid Dynamics Grant # 0967672 and DOE Los Alamos National Laboratory subcontract # 123141.

  3. Full Coverage Shaped Hole Film Cooling in an Accelerating Boundary Layer with High Free-Stream Turbulence

    SciTech Connect

    Ames, Forrest E.; Kingery, Joseph E.

    2015-06-17

    Full coverage shaped-hole film cooling and downstream heat transfer measurements have been acquired in the accelerating flows over a large cylindrical leading edge test surface. The shaped holes had an 8° lateral expansion angled at 30° to the surface with spanwise and streamwise spacings of 3 diameters. Measurements were conducted at four blowing ratios, two Reynolds numbers and six well documented turbulence conditions. Film cooling measurements were acquired over a four to one range in blowing ratio at the lower Reynolds number and at the two lower blowing ratios for the higher Reynolds number. The film cooling measurements were acquired at a coolant to free-stream density ratio of approximately 1.04. The flows were subjected to a low turbulence condition (Tu = 0.7%), two levels of turbulence for a smaller sized grid (Tu = 3.5%, and 7.9%), one turbulence level for a larger grid (8.1%), and two levels of turbulence generated using a mock aero-combustor (Tu = 9.3% and 13.7%). Turbulence level is shown to have a significant influence in mixing away film cooling coverage progressively as the flow develops in the streamwise direction. Effectiveness levels for the aero-combustor turbulence condition are reduced to as low as 20% of low turbulence values by the furthest downstream region. The film cooling discharge is located close to the leading edge with very thin and accelerating upstream boundary layers. Film cooling data at the lower Reynolds number, show that transitional flows have significantly improved effectiveness levels compared with turbulent flows. Downstream effectiveness levels are very similar to slot film cooling data taken at the same coolant flow rates over the same cylindrical test surface. However, slots perform significantly better in the near discharge region. These data are expected to be very useful in grounding computational predictions of full coverage shaped hole film cooling with elevated turbulence levels and acceleration. IR

  4. First Reconnected Flux Tubes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andersson, L.; Lapenta, G.; Newman, D. L.; Markidis, S.; Spanswick, E. L.; Baker, J. B.; Clausen, L. B.; Larson, D. E.; Ergun, R. E.; Frey, H. U.; Singer, H. J.; Angelopoulos, V.; Bonnell, J. W.; McFadden, J. P.; Glassmeier, K.; Wolfgang, B.

    2011-12-01

    THEMIS observations from the magnetic equator (the equatorial plane) in the near-earth tail reveal a great amount of information regarding the plasma environment in the vicinity of the first reconnected flux tubes (a subgroup of dipolarization fronts). Two sequential observations of dipolarization fronts are analyzed in detail using three of the THEMIS spacecraft. Particle acceleration to high energies (>50 keV) is observed together with a void region interpreted as a region to which the full electron distribution has incomplete access. Whistler waves, which are observed, could be driven by one of the two electron populations located in the wake of the first reconnected flux tubes. The detailed observations are compared with 2D and 3D implicit kinetic simulation of reconnection events. This presentation focuses on the similarity between observation and simulation. One key aspect of this presentation is a demonstration of how different the signature is when observing at vs off the magnetic equator, since most observations in the literature (unlike the observations presented here) are from off the equator. For this event, additional spacecraft and ground observations have been analyzed, which demonstrate that a reconfiguration of the magnetosphere is taking place. However, the focus of this presentation is on the small scale (<~10 di), rather than the large scale (~20 Re).

  5. THE MATRYOSHKA RUN. II. TIME-DEPENDENT TURBULENCE STATISTICS, STOCHASTIC PARTICLE ACCELERATION, AND MICROPHYSICS IMPACT IN A MASSIVE GALAXY CLUSTER

    SciTech Connect

    Miniati, Francesco

    2015-02-10

    We use the Matryoshka run to study the time-dependent statistics of structure-formation-driven turbulence in the intracluster medium of a 10{sup 15} M {sub ☉} galaxy cluster. We investigate the turbulent cascade in the inner megaparsec for both compressional and incompressible velocity components. The flow maintains approximate conditions of fully developed turbulence, with departures thereof settling in about an eddy-turnover time. Turbulent velocity dispersion remains above 700 km s{sup –1} even at low mass accretion rate, with the fraction of compressional energy between 10% and 40%. The normalization and the slope of the compressional turbulence are susceptible to large variations on short timescales, unlike the incompressible counterpart. A major merger occurs around redshift z ≅ 0 and is accompanied by a long period of enhanced turbulence, ascribed to temporal clustering of mass accretion related to spatial clustering of matter. We test models of stochastic acceleration by compressional modes for the origin of diffuse radio emission in galaxy clusters. The turbulence simulation model constrains an important unknown of this complex problem and brings forth its dependence on the elusive microphysics of the intracluster plasma. In particular, the specifics of the plasma collisionality and the dissipation physics of weak shocks affect the cascade of compressional modes with strong impact on the acceleration rates. In this context radio halos emerge as complex phenomena in which a hierarchy of processes acting on progressively smaller scales are at work. Stochastic acceleration by compressional modes implies statistical correlation of radio power and spectral index with merging cores distance, both testable in principle with radio surveys.

  6. The Matryoshka Run. II. Time-dependent Turbulence Statistics, Stochastic Particle Acceleration, and Microphysics Impact in a Massive Galaxy Cluster

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miniati, Francesco

    2015-02-01

    We use the Matryoshka run to study the time-dependent statistics of structure-formation-driven turbulence in the intracluster medium of a 1015 M ⊙ galaxy cluster. We investigate the turbulent cascade in the inner megaparsec for both compressional and incompressible velocity components. The flow maintains approximate conditions of fully developed turbulence, with departures thereof settling in about an eddy-turnover time. Turbulent velocity dispersion remains above 700 km s-1 even at low mass accretion rate, with the fraction of compressional energy between 10% and 40%. The normalization and the slope of the compressional turbulence are susceptible to large variations on short timescales, unlike the incompressible counterpart. A major merger occurs around redshift z ~= 0 and is accompanied by a long period of enhanced turbulence, ascribed to temporal clustering of mass accretion related to spatial clustering of matter. We test models of stochastic acceleration by compressional modes for the origin of diffuse radio emission in galaxy clusters. The turbulence simulation model constrains an important unknown of this complex problem and brings forth its dependence on the elusive microphysics of the intracluster plasma. In particular, the specifics of the plasma collisionality and the dissipation physics of weak shocks affect the cascade of compressional modes with strong impact on the acceleration rates. In this context radio halos emerge as complex phenomena in which a hierarchy of processes acting on progressively smaller scales are at work. Stochastic acceleration by compressional modes implies statistical correlation of radio power and spectral index with merging cores distance, both testable in principle with radio surveys.

  7. Magnetospheric Multiscale Satellite Observations of Parallel Electron Acceleration in Magnetic Field Reconnection by Fermi Reflection from Time Domain Structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mozer, F. S.; Agapitov, O. A.; Artemyev, A.; Burch, J. L.; Ergun, R. E.; Giles, B. L.; Mourenas, D.; Torbert, R. B.; Phan, T. D.; Vasko, I.

    2016-04-01

    The same time domain structures (TDS) have been observed on two Magnetospheric Multiscale Satellites near Earth's dayside magnetopause. These TDS, traveling away from the X line along the magnetic field at 4000 km /s , accelerated field-aligned ˜5 eV electrons to ˜200 eV by a single Fermi reflection of the electrons by these overtaking barriers. Additionally, the TDS contained both positive and negative potentials, so they were a mixture of electron holes and double layers. They evolve in ˜10 km of space or 7 ms of time and their spatial scale size is 10-20 km, which is much larger than the electron gyroradius (<1 km ) or the electron inertial length (4 km at the observation point, less nearer the X line).

  8. Magnetospheric Multiscale Satellite Observations of Parallel Electron Acceleration in Magnetic Field Reconnection by Fermi Reflection from Time Domain Structures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mozer, F. S.; Agapitov, O. A.; Artemyev, A.; Burch, J. L.; Ergun, R. E.; Giles, B. L.; Mourenas, D.; Torbert, R. B.; Phan, T. D.; Vasko, I.

    2016-01-01

    The same time domain structures (TDS) have been observed on two Magnetospheric Multiscale Satellites near Earth's dayside magnetopause. These TDS, traveling away from the X line along the magnetic field at 4000 km/s, accelerated field-aligned approx. 5 eV electrons to approx. 200 eV by a single Fermi reflection of the electrons by these overtaking barriers. Additionally, the TDS contained both positive and negative potentials, so they were a mixture of electron holes and double layers. They evolve in approx.10 km of space or 7 ms of time and their spatial scale size is 10-20 km, which is much larger than the electron gyroradius (less than1km) or the electron inertial length (4 km at the observation point, less nearer the X line).

  9. The Role of Fast Magnetic Reconnection on the Radio and Gamma-ray Emission from the Nuclear Regions of Microquasars and Low Luminosity AGNs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kadowaki, L. H. S.; de Gouveia Dal Pino, E. M.; Singh, C. B.

    2015-04-01

    Fast magnetic reconnection events can be a very powerful mechanism operating in the core region of microquasars and active galactic nuclei (AGNs). In earlier work, it has been suggested that the power released by fast reconnection events between the magnetic field lines lifting from the inner accretion disk region and the lines anchored into the central black hole could accelerate relativistic particles and produce the observed radio emission from microquasars and low luminosity AGNs (LLAGNs). Moreover, it has been proposed that the observed correlation between the radio emission and the mass of these sources, spanning 1010 orders of magnitude in mass, might be related to this process. In the present work, we revisit this model comparing two different fast magnetic reconnection mechanisms, namely, fast reconnection driven by anomalous resistivity (AR) and by turbulence. We apply the scenario above to a much larger sample of sources (including also blazars, and gamma-ray bursts—GRBs), and find that LLAGNs and microquasars do confirm the trend above. Furthermore, when driven by turbulence, not only their radio but also their gamma-ray emission can be due to magnetic power released by fast reconnection, which may accelerate particles to relativistic velocities in the core region of these sources. Thus the turbulent-driven fast reconnection model is able to reproduce verywell the observed emission. On the other hand, the emission from blazars and GRBs does not follow the same trend as that of the LLAGNs and microquasars, indicating that the radio and gamma-ray emission in these cases is produced beyond the core, along the jet, by another population of relativistic particles, as expected.

  10. THE ROLE OF FAST MAGNETIC RECONNECTION ON THE RADIO AND GAMMA-RAY EMISSION FROM THE NUCLEAR REGIONS OF MICROQUASARS AND LOW LUMINOSITY AGNs

    SciTech Connect

    Kadowaki, L. H. S.; Pino, E. M. de Gouveia Dal; Singh, C. B. E-mail: dalpino@iag.usp.br

    2015-04-01

    Fast magnetic reconnection events can be a very powerful mechanism operating in the core region of microquasars and active galactic nuclei (AGNs). In earlier work, it has been suggested that the power released by fast reconnection events between the magnetic field lines lifting from the inner accretion disk region and the lines anchored into the central black hole could accelerate relativistic particles and produce the observed radio emission from microquasars and low luminosity AGNs (LLAGNs). Moreover, it has been proposed that the observed correlation between the radio emission and the mass of these sources, spanning 10{sup 10} orders of magnitude in mass, might be related to this process. In the present work, we revisit this model comparing two different fast magnetic reconnection mechanisms, namely, fast reconnection driven by anomalous resistivity (AR) and by turbulence. We apply the scenario above to a much larger sample of sources (including also blazars, and gamma-ray bursts—GRBs), and find that LLAGNs and microquasars do confirm the trend above. Furthermore, when driven by turbulence, not only their radio but also their gamma-ray emission can be due to magnetic power released by fast reconnection, which may accelerate particles to relativistic velocities in the core region of these sources. Thus the turbulent-driven fast reconnection model is able to reproduce verywell the observed emission. On the other hand, the emission from blazars and GRBs does not follow the same trend as that of the LLAGNs and microquasars, indicating that the radio and gamma-ray emission in these cases is produced beyond the core, along the jet, by another population of relativistic particles, as expected.

  11. The relation between reconnected flux, the parallel electric field, and the reconnection rate in a three-dimensional kinetic simulation of magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Wendel, D. E.; Olson, D. K.; Hesse, M.; Kuznetsova, M.; Adrian, M. L.; Aunai, N.; Karimabadi, H.; Daughton, W.

    2013-12-15

    We investigate the distribution of parallel electric fields and their relationship to the location and rate of magnetic reconnection in a large particle-in-cell simulation of 3D turbulent magnetic reconnection with open boundary conditions. The simulation's guide field geometry inhibits the formation of simple topological features such as null points. Therefore, we derive the location of potential changes in magnetic connectivity by finding the field lines that experience a large relative change between their endpoints, i.e., the quasi-separatrix layer. We find a good correspondence between the locus of changes in magnetic connectivity or the quasi-separatrix layer and the map of large gradients in the integrated parallel electric field (or quasi-potential). Furthermore, we investigate the distribution of the parallel electric field along the reconnecting field lines. We find the reconnection rate is controlled by only the low-amplitude, zeroth and first–order trends in the parallel electric field while the contribution from fluctuations of the parallel electric field, such as electron holes, is negligible. The results impact the determination of reconnection sites and reconnection rates in models and in situ spacecraft observations of 3D turbulent reconnection. It is difficult through direct observation to isolate the loci of the reconnection parallel electric field amidst the large amplitude fluctuations. However, we demonstrate that a positive slope of the running sum of the parallel electric field along the field line as a function of field line length indicates where reconnection is occurring along the field line.

  12. A review of astrophysical reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uzdensky, Dmitri

    Magnetic reconnection is a basic plasma process involving rapid rearrangement of magnetic field topology. It often leads to violent release of magnetic energy and its conversion to the plasma thermal and kinetic energy as well as nonthermal particle acceleration. It is thus believed to power numerous types of explosive phenomena both inside and outside the Solar system, including various kinds of high-energy flares. In this talk I will first give an overview of astrophysical systems where reconnection is believed to play an important role. Examples include pulsed high-energy emission in pulsar magnetospheres; gamma-ray flares in pulsar wind nebulae and AGN/blazar jets; Gamma-Ray Bursts; and giant flares in magnetar systems. I will also analyze the physical conditions of the plasma in some of these astrophysical systems and will discuss the fundamental physical differences between various astrophysical instances of magnetic reconnection and the more familiar solar and space examples of reconnection. In particular, I will demonstrate the importance of including radiative effects in order to understand astrophysical magnetic reconnection and in order to connect our theoretical models with the observed radiation signatures.

  13. Effort of spanwise variation of turbulence on the normal acceleration of airplanes with small span relative to turbulence scale

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pratt, K. G.

    1975-01-01

    A rigid airplane with an unswept wing is analyzed. The results show that the power spectrum, relative to that for a one-dimensional turbulence field, is significantly attenuated at the higher frequencies even for airplanes with arbitrarily small ratios of span to scale of turbulence. This attenuation is described by a simple weighting function of frequency that depends only on aspect ratio. The weighting function, together with the attenuation due to the unsteady flow of gust penetration, allows the determination of the average rate of zero crossings for airplanes having very small spans without recourse to an integral truncation which is often required in calculations based on a one-dimensional turbulence field.

  14. Collisionless Magnetic Reconnection in Space Plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Treumann, Rudolf A.; Baumjohann, Wolfgang

    2013-12-01

    Magnetic reconnection, the merging of oppositely directed magnetic fields that leads to field reconfiguration, plasma heating, jetting and acceleration, is one of the most celebrated processes in collisionless plasmas. It requires the violation of the frozen-in condition which ties gyrating charged particles to the magnetic field inhibiting diffusion. Ongoing reconnection has been identified in near-Earth space as being responsible for the excitation of substorms, magnetic storms, generation of field aligned currents and their consequences, the wealth of auroral phenomena. Its theoretical understanding is now on the verge of being completed. Reconnection takes place in thin current sheets. Analytical concepts proceeded gradually down to the microscopic scale, the scale of the electron skin depth or inertial length, recognizing that current layers that thin do preferentially undergo spontaneous reconnection. Thick current layers start reconnecting when being forced by plasma inflow to thin. For almost half a century the physical mechanism of reconnection has remained a mystery. Spacecraft in situ observations in combination with sophisticated numerical simulations in two and three dimensions recently clarified the mist, finding that reconnection produces a specific structure of the current layer inside the electron inertial (also called electron diffusion) region around the reconnection site, the X line. Onset of reconnection is attributed to pseudo-viscous contributions of the electron pressure tensor aided by electron inertia and drag, creating a complicated structured electron current sheet, electric fields, and an electron exhaust extended along the current layer. We review the general background theory and recent developments in numerical simulation on collisionless reconnection. It is impossible to cover the entire field of reconnection in a short space-limited review. The presentation necessarily remains cursory, determined by our taste, preferences, and kn

  15. Dissipation and reconnection in boundary-driven reduced magnetohydrodynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Wan, Minping; Rappazzo, Antonio Franco; Matthaeus, William H.; Servidio, Sergio; Oughton, Sean

    2014-12-10

    We study the statistics of coherent current sheets, the population of X-type critical points, and reconnection rates in a coronal loop geometry, via numerical simulations of reduced magnetohydrodynamic turbulence. Current sheets and sites of reconnection (magnetic X-points) are identified in two-dimensional planes of the three-dimensional simulation domain. The geometry of the identified current sheets—including area, length, and width—and the magnetic dissipation occurring in the current sheets are statistically characterized. We also examine the role of magnetic reconnection, by computing the reconnection rates at the identified X-points and investigating their association with current sheets.

  16. Vortex reconnections in atomic condensates at finite temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, A. J.; Zuccher, S.; Caliari, M.; Proukakis, N. P.; Parker, N. G.; Barenghi, C. F.

    2014-07-01

    The study of vortex reconnections is an essential ingredient of understanding superfluid turbulence, a phenomenon recently also reported in trapped atomic Bose-Einstein condensates. In this work we show that, despite the established dependence of vortex motion on temperature in such systems, vortex reconnections are actually temperature independent on the typical length and time scales of atomic condensates. Our work is based on a dissipative Gross-Pitaevskii equation for the condensate, coupled to a semiclassical Boltzmann equation for the thermal cloud (the Zaremba-Nikuni-Griffin formalism). Comparison to vortex reconnections in homogeneous condensates further shows reconnections to be insensitive to the inhomogeneity in the background density.

  17. Influence of magnetic turbulence on the propagation of accelerated electrons and hard X-ray brightness distribution in solar flares

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charikov, Yu. E.; Shabalin, A. N.

    2015-12-01

    The influence of magnetic turbulence on the hard X-ray brightness distribution in magnetic loops during solar flares was studied. An analysis was perfomed based on the solution of the kinetic equation for relativistic electrons, in which the regular energy loss, Coulomb scattering, magnetic reflection, and the effect of the reverse current and magnetic turbulence are taken into account. It was shown that scattering by magnetic inhomogeneities with parameter η = δ B/ B = 10-3 results in an increase in hard X-ray brightness at loop footpoints when the distribution of accelerated electrons is isotropic and mostly in the loop coronal part if the electron source is anisotropic. The influence of magnetic turbulence is absent at δ B/ B ≤ 10-5.

  18. Turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frisch, Uriel

    1996-01-01

    Written five centuries after the first studies of Leonardo da Vinci and half a century after A.N. Kolmogorov's first attempt to predict the properties of flow, this textbook presents a modern account of turbulence, one of the greatest challenges in physics. "Fully developed turbulence" is ubiquitous in both cosmic and natural environments, in engineering applications and in everyday life. Elementary presentations of dynamical systems ideas, probabilistic methods (including the theory of large deviations) and fractal geometry make this a self-contained textbook. This is the first book on turbulence to use modern ideas from chaos and symmetry breaking. The book will appeal to first-year graduate students in mathematics, physics, astrophysics, geosciences and engineering, as well as professional scientists and engineers.

  19. Direct evidence for kinetic effects associated with solar wind reconnection.

    PubMed

    Xu, Xiaojun; Wang, Yi; Wei, Fengsi; Feng, Xueshang; Deng, Xiaohua; Ma, Yonghui; Zhou, Meng; Pang, Ye; Wong, Hon-Cheng

    2015-01-28

    Kinetic effects resulting from the two-fluid physics play a crucial role in the fast collisionless reconnection, which is a process to explosively release massive energy stored in magnetic fields in space and astrophysical plasmas. In-situ observations in the Earth's magnetosphere provide solid consistence with theoretical models on the point that kinetic effects are required in the collisionless reconnection. However, all the observations associated with solar wind reconnection have been analyzed in the context of magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) although a lot of solar wind reconnection exhausts have been reported. Because of the absence of kinetic effects and substantial heating, whether the reconnections are still ongoing when they are detected in the solar wind remains unknown. Here, by dual-spacecraft observations, we report a solar wind reconnection with clear Hall magnetic fields. Its corresponding Alfvenic electron outflow jet, derived from the decouple between ions and electrons, is identified, showing direct evidence for kinetic effects that dominate the collisionless reconnection. The turbulence associated with the exhaust is a kind of background solar wind turbulence, implying that the reconnection generated turbulence has not much developed.

  20. Turbulence at high resolution: intense events in dissipation, enstrophy and acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yeung, P. K.; Zhai, X. M.; Sreenivasan, K. R.

    2014-11-01

    Access to the Blue Waters supercomputer under the NSF Track 1 Petascale Resource Allocations program has allowed us to conduct an 81923 simulation of forced isotropic turbulence, with Taylor-scale Reynolds number close to 1300, and grid spacing at about 1.5 Kolmogorov scales. Extreme fluctuations in dissipation and enstrophy (over 10,000 times the mean) are observed, and found to scale similarly and occur together. Conditional sampling based on both dissipation and enstrophy shows that such extreme events in these variables are directly associated with strong intermittency in the fluid particle acceleration, which reaches values well beyond 100 standard deviations. An attempt is made to characterize in detail the formation of events of intense dissipation and enstrophy, including the transport, production and dissipation terms in the dissipation and enstrophy transport equations, as well as the nature of local flow conditions in principal strain-rate axes. Statistics of dissipation and enstrophy averaged over 3D sub-domains of linear size in the inertial range are also available. Both high Reynolds number and good small-scale resolution are important factors in these results. Supported by NSF Grant ACI-1036170.

  1. TRANSPORT EQUATION FOR MHD TURBULENCE: APPLICATION TO PARTICLE ACCELERATION AT INTERPLANETARY SHOCKS

    SciTech Connect

    Sokolov, Igor V.; Gombosi, Tamas I.; Roussev, Ilia I.; Skender, Marina; Usmanov, Arcadi V. E-mail: tamas@umich.edu E-mail: Arcadi.Usmanov.1@gsfc.nasa.gov

    2009-05-01

    The aim of the present paper is to unify the various transport equations for turbulent waves that are used in different areas of space physics. Here, we mostly focus on the magnetohydrodynamic turbulence, in particular the Alfvenic turbulence. The applied methods, however, are general and can be extended to other forms of turbulence, for example the acoustic turbulence, or Langmuir plasma waves. With minor modifications, the derivations followed here can be extended for relativistic motions, thus making it possible to apply them to the wave transport in astrophysical objects with high plasma speeds (radiojets), or strong gravity (black hole surroundings)

  2. Kinetic Structure of the Reconnection Diffusion Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khotyaintsev, Yuri

    2016-04-01

    We present high-resolution multi-spacecraft observations of electromagnetic fields and particle distributions by Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission throughout a reconnection layer at the sub-solar magnetopause. We study which terms in the generalized Ohm's law balance the observed electric field throughout the region. We also study waves and particle distribution functions in order to identify kinetic boundaries created due to acceleration and trapping of electrons and ions as well as mixing of electron populations from different sides of the reconnecting layer. We discuss the interplay between particles, waves, and DC electric and magnetic fields, which clearly demonstrates kinetic and multi-scale nature of the reconnection diffusion region.

  3. Reconnecting flux-rope dynamo.

    PubMed

    Baggaley, Andrew W; Barenghi, Carlo F; Shukurov, Anvar; Subramanian, Kandaswamy

    2009-11-01

    We develop a model of the fluctuation dynamo in which the magnetic field is confined to thin flux ropes advected by a multiscale model of turbulence. Magnetic dissipation occurs only via reconnection of the flux ropes. This model can be viewed as an implementation of the asymptotic limit R_{m}-->infinity for a continuous magnetic field, where magnetic dissipation is strongly localized to small regions of strong-field gradients. We investigate the kinetic-energy release into heat mediated by the dynamo action, both in our model and by solving the induction equation with the same flow. We find that a flux-rope dynamo is an order of magnitude more efficient at converting mechanical energy into heat. The probability density of the magnetic energy release in reconnections has a power-law form with the slope -3 , consistent with the solar corona heating by nanoflares.

  4. Reconnecting flux-rope dynamo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baggaley, Andrew W.; Barenghi, Carlo F.; Shukurov, Anvar; Subramanian, Kandaswamy

    2009-11-01

    We develop a model of the fluctuation dynamo in which the magnetic field is confined to thin flux ropes advected by a multiscale model of turbulence. Magnetic dissipation occurs only via reconnection of the flux ropes. This model can be viewed as an implementation of the asymptotic limit Rm→∞ for a continuous magnetic field, where magnetic dissipation is strongly localized to small regions of strong-field gradients. We investigate the kinetic-energy release into heat mediated by the dynamo action, both in our model and by solving the induction equation with the same flow. We find that a flux-rope dynamo is an order of magnitude more efficient at converting mechanical energy into heat. The probability density of the magnetic energy release in reconnections has a power-law form with the slope -3 , consistent with the solar corona heating by nanoflares.

  5. Magnetic reconnection launcher

    DOEpatents

    Cowan, Maynard

    1989-01-01

    An electromagnetic launcher includes a plurality of electrical stages which are energized sequentially in synchrony with the passage of a projectile. Each stage of the launcher includes two or more coils which are arranged coaxially on either closed-loop or straight lines to form gaps between their ends. The projectile has an electrically conductive gap-portion that passes through all the gaps of all the stages in a direction transverse to the axes of the coils. The coils receive an electric current, store magnetic energy, and convert a significant portion of the stored magnetic energy into kinetic energy of the projectile by magnetic reconnection as the gap portion of the projectile moves through the gap. The magnetic polarity of the opposing coils is in the same direction, e.g. N-S-N-S. A gap portion of the projectile may be made from aluminum and is propelled by the reconnection of magnetic flux stored in the coils which causes accelerating forces to act upon the projectile at both the rear vertical surface of the projectile and at the horizontal surfaces of the projectile near its rear. The gap portion of the projectile may be flat, rectangular and longer than the length of the opposing coils and fit loosely within the gap between the opposing coils.

  6. Magnetic reconnection launcher

    SciTech Connect

    Cowan, M.

    1989-04-04

    An electromagnetic launcher is described, which includes a plurality of electrical stages which are energized sequentially in synchrony with the passage of a projectile. Each stage of the launcher includes two or more coils which are arranged coaxially on either closed-loop or straight lines to form gaps between their ends. The projectile has an electrically conductive gap-portion that passes through all the gaps of all the stages in a direction transverse to the axes of the coils. The coils receive an electric current, store magnetic energy, and convert a significant portion of the stored magnetic energy into kinetic energy of the projectile by magnetic reconnection as the gap portion of the projectile moves through the gap. The magnetic polarity of the opposing coils is in the same direction, e.g. N-S-N-S. A gap portion of the projectile may be made from aluminum and is propelled by the reconnection of magnetic flux stored in the coils which causes accelerating forces to act upon the projectile at both the rear vertical surface of the projectile and at the horizontal surfaces of the projectile near its rear. The gap portion of the projectile may be flat, rectangular and longer than the length of the opposing coils and fit loosely within the gap between the opposing coils.

  7. Structure of sheared and rotating turbulence: Multiscale statistics of Lagrangian and Eulerian accelerations and passive scalar dynamics.

    PubMed

    Jacobitz, Frank G; Schneider, Kai; Bos, Wouter J T; Farge, Marie

    2016-01-01

    The acceleration statistics of sheared and rotating homogeneous turbulence are studied using direct numerical simulation results. The statistical properties of Lagrangian and Eulerian accelerations are considered together with the influence of the rotation to shear ratio, as well as the scale dependence of their statistics. The probability density functions (pdfs) of both Lagrangian and Eulerian accelerations show a strong and similar dependence on the rotation to shear ratio. The variance and flatness of both accelerations are analyzed and the extreme values of the Eulerian acceleration are observed to be above those of the Lagrangian acceleration. For strong rotation it is observed that flatness yields values close to three, corresponding to Gaussian-like behavior, and for moderate and vanishing rotation the flatness increases. Furthermore, the Lagrangian and Eulerian accelerations are shown to be strongly correlated for strong rotation due to a reduced nonlinear term in this case. A wavelet-based scale-dependent analysis shows that the flatness of both Eulerian and Lagrangian accelerations increases as scale decreases, which provides evidence for intermittent behavior. For strong rotation the Eulerian acceleration is even more intermittent than the Lagrangian acceleration, while the opposite result is obtained for moderate rotation. Moreover, the dynamics of a passive scalar with gradient production in the direction of the mean velocity gradient is analyzed and the influence of the rotation to shear ratio is studied. Concerning the concentration of a passive scalar spread by the flow, the pdf of its Eulerian time rate of change presents higher extreme values than those of its Lagrangian time rate of change. This suggests that the Eulerian time rate of change of scalar concentration is mainly due to advection, while its Lagrangian counterpart is only due to gradient production and viscous dissipation.

  8. Physics of Reconnection and MMS Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuznetsova, M. M.; Hesse, M.; Gombosi, T.

    2009-01-01

    Reconnection is the most important process driving the Earth's magnetosphere. Key to the success of the MMS science plan is the coupling of theory and observation. Determining the kinetic processes occurring in the diffusion region and physical parameters that control the rate of magnetic reconnection are among primary objectives of the MMS mission. Analysis of the role played by particle inertial effects in the diffusion region where the plasma is unmagnetized will be presented. The reconnection electric field in he diffusion region is supported primarily by particle non-gyrotropic effects. At the quasi-steady stage the reconnection electric field serves to accelerate and heat the incoming plasma population to maintain the current flow in the diffusion region the pressure balance. The primary mechanism controlling the dissipation in the vicinity of the reconnection site is incorporated into the fluid description in terms of non-gyrotropic corrections to the. induction and energy equations. The results of kinetic and fluid simulations illustrating the physics of magnetic reconnection will be presented. We will dem:tistrate that kinetic nongyrotropic effects can significantly alter the global magnetosphere evolution and location of reconnection sites.

  9. Observations and models of magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barta, Miroslav

    2015-08-01

    Magnetic reconnection is now almost unanimously considered to be a key plasma process for energy release in solar and stellar flares. Recent decade have seen rapid development in the theory, simulations and searching for observational evidences of magnetic reconnection being in action in the core of flares. Modern modeling approach involves many realistic aspects of magnetic reconnection such as intrinsically 3D nature of the process and, namely, its highly dynamic character connected with violent formation of plasmoids at many scales. The cascade of plasmoid formation represents natural process of fast, turbulent energy transfer to the kinetic dissipation scale. This concept, revealed by numerical simulations, has found its ground in the theory of (ideal) plasmoid instability in current layers with high aspect ratio. The plasmoid dominated reconnection regime is capable to account for many puzzling dilemmas in the flare physics ranging from the observation-demanded energy release rate vs. standard reconnection-regime timescales, observed organized large-scale structures vs. signatures of fragmented energy release etc. The talk aims at reviewing recent theoretical and simulation development in this direction and observational support for the concept of plasmoid-driven reconnection cascade namely in solar flares.

  10. Reconnection rates in driven magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Birn, J.; Hesse, M.

    2007-08-15

    Using resistive magnetohydrodynamic simulations, we investigate the influence of various parameters on the reconnection rate in two scenarios of magnetic reconnection. The first scenario consists of the ''Newton Challenge'' problem [Birn et al., Geophys. Res. Lett. 32, L06105 (2005)]. In this scenario, reconnection is initiated in a plane Harris-type current sheet by temporally limited, spatially varying, inflow of magnetic flux. The second scenario consists of the well-studied island coalescence problem. This scenario starts from an equilibrium containing periodic magnetic islands with parallel current filaments. Due to the attraction between parallel currents, pairs of islands may move toward each other, forming a current sheet in between. This leads to reconnection and ultimately the merging of islands. In either scenario, magnetic reconnection may be considered as being driven by external or internal forcing. Consistent with that interpretation we find that in either case the maximum reconnection rate (electric field) depends approximately linearly on the maximum driving electric field, when other parameters remain unchanged. However, this can be understood mostly from the change of characteristic background parameters; particularly, the increase of the magnetic field strength in the inflow region due to the added magnetic flux. This interpretation is consistent with the result that the maximum of the reconnection electric field is assumed significantly later (tens of Alfven times) than the maximum driving and typically does not match the instantaneous driving electric field. Furthermore, the reconnection rate also depends on the resistivity and the time scale of the driving.

  11. Ionospheric ions in the reconnection region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Wenya; André, Mats; Khotyaintsey, Yuri; Vaivads, Andris; Toledo-Redondo, Sergio; Graham, Daniel; Divin, Andrey; Fuselier, Stephen; Young, David; Turner, Drew; Lindqvist, Per-Arne; Ergun, Robert; Russell, Christopher; Magnes, Werner; Torbert, Roy; Giles, Barbara; Moore, Thomas; Chandler, Michael; Burch, Jim

    2017-04-01

    Magnetosheath plasma usually determines many properties of the asymmetric magnetic reconnection at the subsolar region of Earth's magnetopause. Cold plasma originating from the ionosphere can also reach the magnetopause, and modify the kinetic physics of the asymmetric reconnection. On 1st November 2015, the Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) spacecraft observed a magnetopause crossing with high-density (10 - 60 cm-3) cold plasma in the magnetosphere and reconnection jets. Jets of ionospheric and magnetosheath origin, with different velocities, are found at the same time between the current sheet and magnetosheath separatrix. The ionospheric-ion jets consisting of H+, He+, and O+ are accelerated to about 300 km/s along the magnetic field. The magnetopause crossing is estimated to be about 300 ion-inertial lengths away from the magnetic reconnection X-line. The ionospheric-ion jet here is suggested to be from the cold ion inflow close the X-line.

  12. First-order particle acceleration in magnetically driven flows

    DOE PAGES

    Beresnyak, Andrey; Li, Hui

    2016-03-02

    In this study, we demonstrate that particles are regularly accelerated while experiencing curvature drift in flows driven by magnetic tension. Some examples of such flows include spontaneous turbulent reconnection and decaying magnetohydrodynamic turbulence, where a magnetic field relaxes to a lower-energy configuration and transfers part of its energy to kinetic motions of the fluid. We show that this energy transfer, which normally causes turbulent cascade and heating of the fluid, also results in a first-order acceleration of non-thermal particles. Since it is generic, this acceleration mechanism is likely to play a role in the production of non-thermal particle distribution inmore » magnetically dominant environments such as the solar chromosphere, pulsar magnetospheres, jets from supermassive black holes, and γ-ray bursts.« less

  13. FIRST-ORDER PARTICLE ACCELERATION IN MAGNETICALLY DRIVEN FLOWS

    SciTech Connect

    Beresnyak, Andrey; Li, Hui

    2016-03-10

    We demonstrate that particles are regularly accelerated while experiencing curvature drift in flows driven by magnetic tension. Some examples of such flows include spontaneous turbulent reconnection and decaying magnetohydrodynamic turbulence, where a magnetic field relaxes to a lower-energy configuration and transfers part of its energy to kinetic motions of the fluid. We show that this energy transfer, which normally causes turbulent cascade and heating of the fluid, also results in a first-order acceleration of non-thermal particles. Since it is generic, this acceleration mechanism is likely to play a role in the production of non-thermal particle distribution in magnetically dominant environments such as the solar chromosphere, pulsar magnetospheres, jets from supermassive black holes, and γ-ray bursts.

  14. First-order particle acceleration in magnetically driven flows

    SciTech Connect

    Beresnyak, Andrey; Li, Hui

    2016-03-02

    In this study, we demonstrate that particles are regularly accelerated while experiencing curvature drift in flows driven by magnetic tension. Some examples of such flows include spontaneous turbulent reconnection and decaying magnetohydrodynamic turbulence, where a magnetic field relaxes to a lower-energy configuration and transfers part of its energy to kinetic motions of the fluid. We show that this energy transfer, which normally causes turbulent cascade and heating of the fluid, also results in a first-order acceleration of non-thermal particles. Since it is generic, this acceleration mechanism is likely to play a role in the production of non-thermal particle distribution in magnetically dominant environments such as the solar chromosphere, pulsar magnetospheres, jets from supermassive black holes, and γ-ray bursts.

  15. Plasma Compression in Magnetic Reconnection Regions in the Solar Corona

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Provornikova, E.; Laming, J. M.; Lukin, V. S.

    2016-07-01

    It has been proposed that particles bouncing between magnetized flows converging in a reconnection region can be accelerated by the first-order Fermi mechanism. Analytical considerations of this mechanism have shown that the spectral index of accelerated particles is related to the total plasma compression within the reconnection region, similarly to the case of the diffusive shock acceleration mechanism. As a first step to investigate the efficiency of Fermi acceleration in reconnection regions in producing hard energy spectra of particles in the solar corona, we explore the degree of plasma compression that can be achieved at reconnection sites. In particular, we aim to determine the conditions for the strong compressions to form. Using a two-dimensional resistive MHD numerical model, we consider a set of magnetic field configurations where magnetic reconnection can occur, including a Harris current sheet, a force-free current sheet, and two merging flux ropes. Plasma parameters are taken to be characteristic of the solar corona. Numerical simulations show that strong plasma compressions (≥4) in the reconnection regions can form when the plasma heating due to reconnection is efficiently removed by fast thermal conduction or the radiative cooling process. The radiative cooling process that is negligible in the typical 1 MK corona can play an important role in the low corona/transition region. It is found that plasma compression is expected to be strongest in low-beta plasma β ˜ 0.01-0.07 at reconnection magnetic nulls.

  16. Observational Aspects of Magnetic Reconnection at the Earth's Magnetosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Souza, Vitor M.; Koga, Daiki; Gonzalez, Walter D.; Cardoso, Flavia R.

    2017-08-01

    Magnetic field reconnection has shown to be the dominant process in the solar wind-Earth's magnetosphere interaction. It enables mass, momentum, and energy exchange between different plasma regimes, and it is regarded as an efficient plasma acceleration and heating mechanism. Reconnection has been observed to occur in laboratory plasmas, at planetary magnetospheres in our Solar System, and the Sun. In this work, we focus on analyzing the characteristics of magnetic reconnection at the Earth's magnetosphere according to spaceborne observations in the vicinity of our planet. Firstly, the locations where magnetic field reconnection are expected to occur within the vast magnetospheric region are addressed, and is shown how they are influenced by changes in the interplanetary magnetic field direction. The main magnetic field and plasma signatures of magnetic reconnection are discussed from both theoretical and observational points of view. Spacecraft observations of ion inertial length scale reconnection are also presented.

  17. Corotating Magnetic Reconnection Site in Saturn’s Magnetosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yao, Z. H.; Coates, A. J.; Ray, L. C.; Rae, I. J.; Grodent, D.; Jones, G. H.; Dougherty, M. K.; Owen, C. J.; Guo, R. L.; Dunn, W. R.; Radioti, A.; Pu, Z. Y.; Lewis, G. R.; Waite, J. H.; Gérard, J.-C.

    2017-09-01

    Using measurements from the Cassini spacecraft in Saturn’s magnetosphere, we propose a 3D physical picture of a corotating reconnection site, which can only be driven by an internally generated source. Our results demonstrate that the corotating magnetic reconnection can drive an expansion of the current sheet in Saturn’s magnetosphere and, consequently, can produce Fermi acceleration of electrons. This reconnection site lasted for longer than one of Saturn’s rotation period. The long-lasting and corotating natures of the magnetic reconnection site at Saturn suggest fundamentally different roles of magnetic reconnection in driving magnetospheric dynamics (e.g., the auroral precipitation) from the Earth. Our corotating reconnection picture could also potentially shed light on the fast rotating magnetized plasma environments in the solar system and beyond.

  18. Cross-scale Observational Signatures of Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savage, S. L.; Malaspina, D.

    2014-12-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a significant mechanism for energy release across many astrophysical applications. In the solar atmosphere, reconnection is considered a primary contributor of flare evolution and coronal heating. Directly observing reconnection occurring in the solar atmosphere, however, is not trivial considering that the scale size of the diffusion region is magnitudes smaller than the observational capabilities of current instrumentation, and coronal magnetic field measurements are not currently sufficient to capture the process. Meanwhile, reconnection occurring in the Earth's magnetosphere transfers energy from the solar wind through a comparable process, although on vastly different scales. Magnetospheric measurements are made in situ rather than remotely; ergo, comparison of observations between the two regimes allows for potentially significant insight into reconnection as a stochastic and possibly turbulent process. We will present a set of observations from long-duration solar events and compare them to in situ measurements from the magnetosphere.

  19. Cross-Scale Observational Signatures of Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Savage, Sabrina; Malaspina, David

    2014-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a significant mechanism for energy release across many astrophysical applications. In the solar atmosphere, reconnection is considered a primary contributor of flare evolution and coronal heating. Directly observing reconnection occurring in the solar atmosphere, however, is not trivial considering that the scale size of the diffusion region is magnitudes smaller than the observational capabilities of current instrumentation, and coronal magnetic field measurements are not currently sufficient to capture the process. Meanwhile, reconnection occurring in the Earth's magnetosphere transfers energy from the solar wind through a comparable process, although on vastly different scales. Magnetospheric measurements are made in situ rather than remotely; ergo, comparison of observations between the two regimes allows for potentially significant insight into reconnection as a stochastic and possibly turbulent process. We will present a set of observations from long-duration solar events and compare them to in situ measurements from the magnetosphere.

  20. Enhanced magnetic reconnection in the presence of pressure gradients

    SciTech Connect

    Pueschel, M. J.; Terry, P. W.; Told, D.; Jenko, F.

    2015-06-15

    Magnetic reconnection in the presence of background pressure gradients is studied, with special attention to parallel (compressional) magnetic fluctuations. A process is reported that reconnects fields through coupling of drift-wave-type instabilities with current sheets. Its time scale is set not by the reconnecting field but by inhomogeneities of the background density or temperature. The observed features can be attributed to a pressure-gradient-driven linear instability which interacts with the reconnecting system but is fundamentally different from microtearing. In particular, this mode relies on parallel magnetic fluctuations and the associated drift. For turbulent reconnection, similar or even stronger enhancements are reported. In the solar corona, this yields a critical pressure gradient scale length of about 200 km below which this new process becomes dominant over the tearing instability.

  1. FAST MAGNETIC RECONNECTION AND SPONTANEOUS STOCHASTICITY

    SciTech Connect

    Eyink, Gregory L.; Lazarian, A.; Vishniac, E. T.

    2011-12-10

    Magnetic field lines in astrophysical plasmas are expected to be frozen-in at scales larger than the ion gyroradius. The rapid reconnection of magnetic-flux structures with dimensions vastly larger than the gyroradius requires a breakdown in the standard Alfven flux-freezing law. We attribute this breakdown to ubiquitous MHD plasma turbulence with power-law scaling ranges of velocity and magnetic energy spectra. Lagrangian particle trajectories in such environments become 'spontaneously stochastic', so that infinitely many magnetic field lines are advected to each point and must be averaged to obtain the resultant magnetic field. The relative distance between initial magnetic field lines which arrive at the same final point depends upon the properties of two-particle turbulent dispersion. We develop predictions based on the phenomenological Goldreich and Sridhar theory of strong MHD turbulence and on weak MHD turbulence theory. We recover the predictions of the Lazarian and Vishniac theory for the reconnection rate of large-scale magnetic structures. Lazarian and Vishniac also invoked 'spontaneous stochasticity', but of the field lines rather than of the Lagrangian trajectories. More recent theories of fast magnetic reconnection appeal to microscopic plasma processes that lead to additional terms in the generalized Ohm's law, such as the collisionless Hall term. We estimate quantitatively the effect of such processes on the inertial-range turbulence dynamics and find them to be negligible in most astrophysical environments. For example, the predictions of the Lazarian and Vishniac theory are unchanged in Hall MHD turbulence with an extended inertial range, whenever the ion skin depth {delta}{sub i} is much smaller than the turbulent integral length or injection-scale L{sub i} .

  2. Diffusive Cosmic Ray Acceleration at Relativistic Shock Waves with Magnetostatic Turbulence II. Influence of a Finite Downstream Medium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Antecki, T.; Schlickeiser, R.; Krakau, S.

    2016-12-01

    The diffusive acceleration of relativistic cosmic rays at parallel shock waves with magnetostatic turbulence and a finite size of the downstream medium is investigated. For ultrarelativistic shock speeds with Lorentz factor {{{Γ }}}1\\gg 1, both the differential momentum spectrum at the shock and the volume-integrated momentum spectrum are power-law distribution functions with different spectral indices as compared to the case of an infinitely extended downstream medium. However, the spectral differences are only modest as compared to the case of nonrelativistic shocks. The behavior of the momentum spectrum of shock-accelerated particles depends sensitively on the relativistic shock wave Peclet number G(p)={τ }D(p)/{τ }C, i.e., the ratio between the diffusion and convection timescales of cosmic rays to propagate from the shock position to the downstream boundary z 0. For large values of G(p)\\gg 1 the free-escape boundary has no influence on the effectiveness of particle acceleration, still providing a flat momentum power-law spectrum of the accelerated particles. In the opposite case of small Peclet numbers G(p)\\ll 1 at all momenta, the momentum spectrum at the shock steepens to the greater spectral index {ξ }0=3-s+(3.18/{{{Γ }}}1), whereas the volume-integrated momentum spectrum flattens by the same factor 2-s for its power-law spectral index, where s denotes the spectral index of the downstream power spectrum of magnetostatic turbulence. This effectiveness of relativistic shocks in generating flat power-law momentum spectra irrespective of the Peclet number G(p) differs completely from the behavior of nonrelativistic shocks.

  3. Relativistic Electrons Produced by Reconnecting Electric Fields in a Laser-driven Bench-top Solar Flare

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhong, J. Y.; Lin, J.; Li, Y. T.; Wang, X.; Li, Y.; Zhang, K.; Yuan, D. W.; Ping, Y. L.; Wei, H. G.; Wang, J. Q.; Su, L. N.; Li, F.; Han, B.; Liao, G. Q.; Yin, C. L.; Fang, Y.; Yuan, X.; Wang, C.; Sun, J. R.; Liang, G. Y.; Wang, F. L.; Ding, Y. K.; He, X. T.; Zhu, J. Q.; Sheng, Z. M.; Li, G.; Zhao, G.; Zhang, J.

    2016-08-01

    Laboratory experiments have been carried out to model the magnetic reconnection process in a solar flare with powerful lasers. Relativistic electrons with energy up to megaelectronvolts are detected along the magnetic separatrices bounding the reconnection outflow, which exhibit a kappa-like distribution with an effective temperature of ˜109 K. The acceleration of non-thermal electrons is found to be more efficient in the case with a guide magnetic field (a component of a magnetic field along the reconnection-induced electric field) than in the case without a guide field. Hardening of the spectrum at energies ≥500 keV is observed in both cases, which remarkably resembles the hardening of hard X-ray and γ-ray spectra observed in many solar flares. This supports a recent proposal that the hardening in the hard X-ray and γ-ray emissions of solar flares is due to a hardening of the source-electron spectrum. We also performed numerical simulations that help examine behaviors of electrons in the reconnection process with the electromagnetic field configurations occurring in the experiments. The trajectories of non-thermal electrons observed in the experiments were well duplicated in the simulations. Our numerical simulations generally reproduce the electron energy spectrum as well, except for the hardening of the electron spectrum. This suggests that other mechanisms such as shock or turbulence may play an important role in the production of the observed energetic electrons.

  4. The Relation between Reconnected Flux, the Parallel Electric Field, and the Reconnection Rate in a Three-Dimensional Kinetic Simulation of Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wendel, D. E.; Olson, D. K.; Hesse, M.; Karimabadi, H.; Daughton, W. S.

    2013-12-01

    We investigate the distribution of parallel electric fields and their relationship to the location and rate of magnetic reconnection of a large particle-in-cell simulation of 3D turbulent magnetic reconnection with open boundary conditions. The simulation's guide field geometry inhibits the formation of topological features such as separators and null points. Therefore, we derive the location of potential changes in magnetic connectivity by finding the field lines that experience a large relative change between their endpoints, i.e., the quasi-separatrix layer. We find a correspondence between the locus of changes in magnetic connectivity, or the quasi-separatrix layer, and the map of large gradients in the integrated parallel electric field (or quasi-potential). Furthermore, we compare the distribution of parallel electric fields along field lines with the reconnection rate. We find the reconnection rate is controlled by only the low-amplitude, zeroth and first-order trends in the parallel electric field, while the contribution from high amplitude parallel fluctuations, such as electron holes, is negligible. The results impact the determination of reconnection sites within models of 3D turbulent reconnection as well as the inference of reconnection rates from in situ spacecraft measurements. It is difficult through direct observation to isolate the locus of the reconnection parallel electric field amidst the large amplitude fluctuations. However, we demonstrate that a positive slope of the partial sum of the parallel electric field along the field line as a function of field line length indicates where reconnection is occurring along the field line.

  5. Fast Reconnection of Weak Magnetic Fields

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zweibel, Ellen G.

    1998-01-01

    Fast magnetic reconnection refers to annihilation or topological rearrangement of magnetic fields on a timescale that is independent (or nearly independent) of the plasma resistivity. The resistivity of astrophysical plasmas is so low that reconnection is of little practical interest unless it is fast. Yet, the theory of fast magnetic reconnection is on uncertain ground, as models must avoid the tendency of magnetic fields to pile up at the reconnection layer, slowing down the flow. In this paper it is shown that these problems can be avoided to some extent if the flow is three dimensional. On the other hand, it is shown that in the limited but important case of incompressible stagnation point flows, every flow will amplify most magnetic fields. Although examples of fast magnetic reconnection abound, a weak, disordered magnetic field embedded in stagnation point flow will in general be amplified, and should eventually modify the flow. These results support recent arguments against the operation of turbulent resistivity in highly conducting fluids.

  6. Effect of Faxén forces on acceleration statistics of material particles in turbulent flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calzavarini, E.; Volk, R.; Bourgoin, M.; Lévêque, E.; Pinton, J.-F.; Toschi, F.

    The statistical description of particle dispersion in turbulent flow constitutes nowadays an active research area. Such a field is linked to the Lagrangian description of fluid turbulence and poses long standing questions on modeling of hydrodynamical forces on objects in unsteady nonuniform flows [1]. Even in the simplest conditions of highly diluted suspensions of particles whose sizes are smaller than the dissipative scale of the carrier flow, the presently available models are highly idealized. Therefore, theoretical results and predictions need systematic verifications with experimental measures. Particle tracking experiments are technically challenging for the high time and space resolution demanded and for the need to precisely estimate and control the intensity of turbulent flow. Our recent works have been devoted to comparisons between experiments and numerical simulations of simple dynamical particle models [2, 3]. We have widely investigated Lagrangian particle models evolving in a turbulent environment which is described from an Eulerian point of view. In this abstract we shortly review the methods employed: the models for particle dynamics together with the numerical methodology, and we detail on some recent progresses and results.

  7. Oxygen Ions in Magnetotail Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, H.; Walker, R. J.; Lapenta, G.; Schriver, D.; El-Alaoui, M.; Berchem, J.

    2016-12-01

    Spacecraft have observed a significant fraction of oxygen ions (O+) in Earth's magnetotail X-line during the periods of enhanced geomagnetic activity. It is important to understand how such O+ influences the reconnection process and how the O+ ions are heated due to reconnection. To this end we have used a 2.5D implicit Particle-in-Cell simulation (iPic3D) in a 2D Harris current sheet in the presence of H+ and O+. By comparing the simulation runs for oxygen concentrations of 50%, 5% and 0% (i.e. latter run only H+ ions), we found that (1) the dipolarization front (DF) propagation is encumbered by the current sheet O+ inertia, which reduces the DF speed and delays the fast reconnection phase; (2) the reconnection rate in the 50% O+ Run is much less than the 0% O+ Run, which can be attributed to the O+ drag on the convective magnetic flux via an ambipolar electric field in the O+ diffusion region; (3) without entering the exhaust, the lobe O+ can be accelerated near the separatrices away from the X-point by the Hall electric field and form the hot population downstream of the DFs; (4) the pre-existing current sheet O+ ions are reflected by the DFs and form a hook-shaped distribution in phase space, from which the DF speed history can be deduced; (5) the DF thickness is proportional to the O+ concentration in the pre-existing current sheet. These results illustrate the differences between storm-time and non-storm substorms due to a significant concentration of oxygen ions. The oxygen heating results are expected to be observable by the Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission in the magnetotail.

  8. Test Particle Simulation of Acceleration in Cascading Current Sheet Obtained with 2.5D AMR MHD

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Siming; Büchner, Jörg; Gan, Weiqun; Bárta, Miroslav; Zhou, Xiaowei

    2016-07-01

    With electro-magnetic field configuration derived from 2.5D AMR MHD simulations, we calculate the orbit of test charged particles with the guiding center approximation and study the particle acceleration by the induction and resistive electric fields. The induction field can lead to gradual acceleration via the drift of the particle guiding center in magnetic field curvature or gradient.The resistive electric field can lead to run away acceleration with particle energy changing drastically in regions with anomalous resistivity. We will discuss the implication of these results on the study of particle acceleration in turbulent reconnection current sheets.

  9. The turbulent boundary layer on a porous plate - Experimental heat transfer with uniform blowing and suction, with moderately strong acceleration.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thielbahr, W. H.; Kays, W. M.; Moffat, R. J.

    1972-01-01

    Experimental data are presented for heat transfer to the turbulent boundary layer subjected to transpiration and acceleration at constant values of the acceleration parameter K of approximately .00000145. This is a moderately strong acceleration, but not so strong as to result in laminarization of the boundary layer. The results for transpiration fractions F of -0.002, 0.0, and +0.0058 are presented in detail in tabular form, and in graphs of Stanton number versus enthalpy thickness Reynolds number. In addition, temperature profiles at several stations are presented. Stanton number results for F = -0.004, +0.002, and +0.004 are also presented, but in graphical form only. The data were obtained using air as both the free-stream and the transpired fluid, at relatively low velocities, and with temperature differences sufficiently low so that the influence of temperature-dependent fluid properties is minimal. All data were obtained with the surface maintained at a temperature invariant in the direction of flow.

  10. Accelerated inhomogeneous (e.g. Richtmyer-Meshkov) flows: A-dot at intermediate times, vortex-accelerated vortex deposition and turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zabusky, Norman; Peng, Gaozhu; Zhang, Shuang

    2004-11-01

    We review our recent contributions [1,2,3,4] in the light of their omission in recent publications [5,6,7,8]. Included is the VAVD process ( also called: secondary baroclinic circulation generation) which yields more positive and negative circulation through intermediate times than the original shock-accelerated vortex deposition (SAVD). VAVD is due to the acceleration provided by the rolled up vortex from SAVD and more important, the strongly increased density gradients of the multiphase front, also caused by the roll-up process . In addition we quantify : the effect of the initial thickness of the interfacial transition layer; the approach to constant a-dot at intermediate-to-late times; the ubiquity of vortex projectiles and transition to turbulence. Refs: 1.Zabusky, N.J., Kotelnikov, A.D., Gulak, Y. & Peng, G. Amplitude growth rate of a Richtmyer-Meshkov unstable two-dimensional interface to intermediate times. J. Fluid Mechanics, 475, p. 147-162,2003. 2.N. J. Zabusky, S. Gupta and Y. Gulak. Localization and spreading of contact discontinuity layers in simulations of compressible dissipationless flows. J. Comput. Phys. 188 (2) (2003) 347-363, 2003. 3.G. Peng, N. J. Zabusky & S. Zhang. Vortex-accelerated secondary baroclinic vorticity deposition and late intermediate time dynamics of a two-dimensional RM interface. Phys. Fluids 15 (12), 3730-3744, 2003. 4. S. Zhang, N. J. Zabusky, G. Peng & S. Gupta. Shock Gaseous Cylinder Interactions: Dynamically validated initial conditions provide excellent agreement between experiments and Navier-Stokes simulations to late-intermediate time. Phys.Fluids 16(5), 1203-1216, 2004. 5.P. Vorobieff , N.-G. Mohamed, C. Tomkins, C. Goodenough, M. Marr-Lyon, and R. F. Benjamin Scaling evolution in shock-induced transition to turbulence PHYS REV. E 68, 065301.2003. 6.C. Matsuoka, K. Nishihara and Y. Fukuda,. Nonlinear evolution of an interface in the Richtmyer-Meshkov instability. PHYS. REV. E 67, 036301 2003!& erratum 7.K. Nishihara

  11. The Effects of Wave Escape on Fast Magnetosonic Wave Turbulence in Solar Flares

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pongkitiwanichakul, Peera; Chandran, Benjamin D. G.; Karpen, Judith T.; DeVore, C. Richard

    2012-01-01

    One of the leading models for electron acceleration in solar flares is stochastic acceleration by weakly turbulent fast magnetosonic waves ("fast waves"). In this model, large-scale flows triggered by magnetic reconnection excite large-wavelength fast waves, and fast-wave energy then cascades from large wavelengths to small wavelengths. Electron acceleration by large-wavelength fast-waves is weak, and so the model relies on the small-wavelength waves produced by the turbulent cascade. In order for the model to work, the energy cascade time for large-wavelength fast waves must be shorter than the time required for the waves to propagate out of the solar-flare acceleration region. To investigate the effects of wave escape, we solve the wave kinetic equation for fast waves in weak turbulence theory, supplemented with a homogeneous wave-loss term.We find that the amplitude of large-wavelength fast waves must exceed a minimum threshold in order for a significant fraction of the wave energy to cascade to small wavelengths before the waves leave the acceleration region.We evaluate this threshold as a function of the dominant wavelength of the fast waves that are initially excited by reconnection outflows.

  12. Reconnection in Three Dimensions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hesse, Michael

    1999-01-01

    Analyzing the qualitative three-dimensional magnetic structure of a plasmoid, we were led to reconsider the concept of magnetic reconnection from a general point of view. The properties of relatively simple magnetic field models provide a strong preference for one of two definitions of magnetic reconnection that exist in the literature. Any concept of magnetic reconnection defined in terms of magnetic topology seems naturally restricted to cases where the magnetic field vanishes somewhere in the nonideal (diffusion) region. The main part of this paper is concerned with magnetic reconnection in nonvanishing magnetic fields (finite-B reconnection), which has attracted less attention in the past. We show that the electric field component parallel to the magnetic field plays a crucial physical role in finite-B reconnection, and we present two theorems involving the former. The first states a necessary and sufficient condition on the parallel electric field for global reconnection to occur. Here the term "global" means the generic case where the breakdown of magnetic connection occurs for plasma elements that stay outside the nonideal region. The second theorem relates the change of magnetic helicity to the parallel electric field for cases where the electric field vanishes at large distances. That these results provide new insight into three-dimensional reconnection processes is illustrated in terms of the plasmoid configuration, which was our starting point.

  13. Test-particle acceleration in a hierarchical three-dimensional turbulence model

    SciTech Connect

    Dalena, S.; Rappazzo, A. F.; Matthaeus, W. H.; Dmitruk, P.; Greco, A.

    2014-03-10

    The acceleration of charged particles is relevant to the solar corona over a broad range of scales and energies. High-energy particles are usually detected in concomitance with large energy release events like solar eruptions and flares. Nevertheless, acceleration can occur at smaller scales, characterized by dynamical activity near current sheets. To gain insight into the complex scenario of coronal charged particle acceleration, we investigate the properties of acceleration with a test-particle approach using three-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) models. These are obtained from direct solutions of the reduced MHD equations, well suited for a plasma embedded in a strong axial magnetic field, relevant to the inner heliosphere. A multi-box, multiscale technique is used to solve the equations of motion for protons. This method allows us to resolve an extended range of scales present in the system, namely, from the ion inertial scale of the order of a meter up to macroscopic scales of the order of 10 km (1/100th of the outer scale of the system). This new technique is useful to identify the mechanisms that, acting at different scales, are responsible for acceleration to high energies of a small fraction of the particles in the coronal plasma. We report results that describe acceleration at different stages over a broad range of time, length, and energy scales.

  14. Perspectives on magnetic reconnection

    PubMed Central

    Yamada, Masaaki

    2016-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a topological rearrangement of magnetic field that occurs on time scales much faster than the global magnetic diffusion time. Since the field lines break on microscopic scales but energy is stored and the field is driven on macroscopic scales, reconnection is an inherently multi-scale process that often involves both magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) and kinetic phenomena. In this article, we begin with the MHD point of view and then describe the dynamics and energetics of reconnection using a two-fluid formulation. We also focus on the respective roles of global and local processes and how they are coupled. We conclude that the triggers for reconnection are mostly global, that the key energy conversion and dissipation processes are either local or global, and that the presence of a continuum of scales coupled from microscopic to macroscopic may be the most likely path to fast reconnection. PMID:28119547

  15. Perspectives on magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Zweibel, Ellen G.; Yamada, Masaaki

    2016-12-07

    Magnetic reconnection is a topological rearrangement of magnetic field that occurs on time scales much faster than the global magnetic diffusion time. Since the field lines break on microscopic scales but energy is stored and the field is driven on macroscopic scales, reconnection is an inherently multi-scale process that often involves both magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) and kinetic phenomena. In this article, we begin with the MHD point of view and then describe the dynamics and energetics of reconnection using a two-fluid formulation. We also focus on the respective roles of global and local processes and how they are coupled. Here, we conclude that the triggers for reconnection are mostly global, that the key energy conversion and dissipation processes are either local or global, and that the presence of a continuum of scales coupled from microscopic to macroscopic may be the most likely path to fast reconnection.

  16. Perspectives on magnetic reconnection

    DOE PAGES

    Zweibel, Ellen G.; Yamada, Masaaki

    2016-12-07

    Magnetic reconnection is a topological rearrangement of magnetic field that occurs on time scales much faster than the global magnetic diffusion time. Since the field lines break on microscopic scales but energy is stored and the field is driven on macroscopic scales, reconnection is an inherently multi-scale process that often involves both magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) and kinetic phenomena. In this article, we begin with the MHD point of view and then describe the dynamics and energetics of reconnection using a two-fluid formulation. We also focus on the respective roles of global and local processes and how they are coupled. Here, wemore » conclude that the triggers for reconnection are mostly global, that the key energy conversion and dissipation processes are either local or global, and that the presence of a continuum of scales coupled from microscopic to macroscopic may be the most likely path to fast reconnection.« less

  17. The Onset of Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daldorff, Lars K. S.; Klimchuk, James A.; van der Holst, Bart

    2015-04-01

    A fundamental question concerning magnetic energy release on the Sun is why the release occurs only after substantial stresses have been built up in the field. If reconnection were to occur readily, the released energy would be insufficient to explain coronal heating, CMEs, flares, jets, spicules, etc. How can we explain this switch-on property? What is the physical nature of the onset conditions? One idea involves the "secondary instability" of current sheets, which switches on when the rotation of the magnetic field across a current sheet reaches a critical angle. Such conditions would occur at the boundaries of flux tubes that become tangled and twisted by turbulent photospheric convection, for example. Other ideas involve a critical thickness for the current sheet. We report here on the preliminary results of our investigation of reconnect onset. Unlike our earlier work on the secondary instability (Dahlburg, Klimchuk, and Antiochos 2005), we treat the coupled chromosphere-corona system. Using the BATS-R-US MHD code, we simulate a single current sheet in a sheared magnetic field that extends from the chromosphere into the corona. Driver motions are applied at the base of the model. The configuration and chromosphere are both idealized, but capture the essential physics of the problem. The advantage of this unique approach is that it resolves the current sheet to the greatest extent possible while maintaining a realistic solar atmosphere. It thus bridges the gap between "reconnection in a box" studies and studies of large-scale systems such as active regions. One question we will address is whether onset conditions are met first in the chromosphere or corona. We will report on the work done on the project.

  18. The Onset of Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daldorff, L. K. S.; Klimchuk, J. A.

    2015-12-01

    A fundamental question concerning magnetic energy release on the Sun is why the release occurs only after substantial stresses have been built up in the field. If reconnection were to occur readily, the released energy would be insufficient to explain coronal heating, CMEs, flares, jets, spicules, etc. How can we explain this switch-on property? What is the physical nature of the onset conditions? One idea involves the "secondary instability" of current sheets, which switches on when the rotation of the magnetic field across a current sheet reaches a critical angle. Such conditions would occur at the boundaries of flux tubes that become tangled and twisted by turbulent photospheric convection, for example. Other ideas involve a critical thickness for the current sheet. We report here on the preliminary results of our investigation of reconnect onset. Unlike our earlier work on the secondary instability (Dahlburg, Klimchuk, and Antiochos 2005), we treat the coupled chromosphere-corona system. Using the BATS-R-US MHD code, we simulate a single current sheet in a sheared magnetic field that extends from the chromosphere into the corona. Driver motions are applied at the base of the model. The configuration and chromosphere are both idealized, but capture the essential physics of the problem. The advantage of this unique approach is that it resolves the current sheet to the greatest extent possible while maintaining a realistic solar atmosphere. It thus bridges the gap between"reconnection in a box" studies and studies of large-scale systems such as active regions. One question we will address is whether onset conditions are met first in the chromosphere or corona. We will report on the work done on the project.

  19. Reconnection Processes in the Chromosphere and Corona

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shibata, Kazunari

    2012-07-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a fundamental key physical process in magnetized plasmas. Recent space solar observations revealed that magnetic reconnection is ubiquitous in the solar chromospheres and corona. Especially recent Hinode observations has found various types of tiny chromospheric jets, such as chromospheric anemone jets (Shibata et al. 2007), penumbral microjets (Katsukawa et al. 2007), light bridge jets from sunspot umbra (Shimizu et al. 2009), etc. It was also found that the corona is full of tiny X-ray jets (Cirtain et al. 2007). Often they are seen as helical spinning jets (Shimojo et al. 2007, Patsourakos et al. 2008, Pariat et al. 2009, Filippov et al. 2009, Kamio et al. 2010) with Alfvenic waves (Nishizuka et al. 2008, Liu et al. 2009) and there are increasing evidence of magnetic reconnection in these tiny jets. We can now say that as spatial resolution of observations become better and better, smaller and smaller flares and jets have been discovered, which implies that the magnetized solar atmosphere consist of fractal structure and dynamics, i.e., fractal reconnection. Bursty radio and hard X-ray emissions from flares also suggest the fractal reconnection and associated particle acceleration. Since magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) does not contain any characteristic length and time scale, it is natural that MHD structure, dynamics, and reconnection, tend to become fractal in ideal MHD plasmas with large magnetic Reynolds number such as in the solar atmosphere. We would discuss recent observations and theories related to fractal reconnection in the chromospheres and corona, and discuss possible implication to chromospheric and coronal heating.

  20. Magnetotail Reconnection Jets at Lunar Distances

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hietala, H.; Eastwood, J. P.; Drake, J. F.; Phan, T.; Mistry, R.; McFadden, J. P.

    2015-12-01

    Magnetic reconnection redistributes energy by releasing magnetic energy into particle energies—high speed bulk flows, heating, and particle acceleration. With near-Earth in situ observations, we have access to different parameter regimes: The magnetotail has typically a very large magnetic shear and symmetric boundary conditions. Reconnection at the magnetopause, in contrast, usually takes place under asymmetric boundary conditions and a variety of shear angles. Finally, reconnecting current sheets in the solar wind are typically large scale and not affected by nearby obstacles, and observations are typically made extremely far downstream from the X-line. As such, magnetotail reconnection, especially at lunar distances where the effect of the Earth's dipole is small, should be closest to simple models. Ion heating has recently been studied systematically in solar wind and magnetopause reconnection, but not in the magnetotail. The energetics of magnetotail reconnection jets are particularly interesting as the available magnetic energy per particle (Bin2/μ0nin = miVA,in2) is typically orders of magnitude higher and the inflow plasma beta much lower than in the solar wind and at the magnetopause. We survey ARTEMIS data from 2011-2014 for fast reconnection flows and analyse their statistical properties. In particular, we address (i) the ion temperature increase (ii) ion temperature anisotropy and firehose instability, and (iii) the underlying ion dynamics. We examine the spatial structure of the ion temperature across the exhaust, and compare with particle-in-cell simulations. We find that the temperature parallel to the magnetic field dominates near the edges of the jet, while the very center of the exhaust has Tperp > Tpara, indicating Speiser-like ion motion.

  1. Kinetic Theory of Turbulence in Magnetized Plasmas, Charged Particle Acceleration,and Cross-Scale Coupling

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-12-26

    694/1/618 (2009). [2] P. H. Yoon and T.-M. Fang, Proton heating by parallel Alfven wave cascade, Physics of Plasmas 16, 062314, doi: 10.1063...ANSI Std Z39-18 [5] C. S. Wu, P. H. Yoon, and C. B. Wang, On non-resonant proton heating via intrinsic Alfvenic turbulence, Physics of Plasmas 16...interaction, J. Geophys. Res. 115, A01103, doi: 10.1029/2009JA014447 (2010). [10] J. Pavan, L. F. Ziebell, P. H. Yoon, and R. Gaelzer, Ionospheric ion

  2. Kinetic Theory of Turbulence in Magnetized Plasmas, Charged Particle Acceleration, and Cross-Scale Coupling

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-01-10

    Astrophys. J. 694, 618, doi: 10.1088/0004-637X/694/1/618 (2009). [2] P. H. Yoon and T.-M. Fang, Proton heating by parallel Alfven wave cascade, Physics...doi: 10.1088/0741-3335/51/9/095011 (2009). [5] C. S. Wu, P. H. Yoon, and C. B. Wang, On non-resonant proton heating via intrinsic Alfvenic...Gaelzer, Ionospheric ion-acoustic enhancements by turbulent counterstreaming electron beam-plasma interaction, J. Geophys. Res. 115, A02310 doi

  3. What Turns Reconnection On and Off

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hesse, Michael

    2009-01-01

    The dissipation mechanism of magnetic reconnection remains a subject of intense scientific interest. On one hand, one set of recent studies have shown that particle inertia-based processes, which include thermal and bulk inertial effects, provide the reconnection electric field in the diffusion region. On the other hand, a second set of studies emphasizes the role of wave-particle interactions in providing anomalous resistivity in the diffusion region. In this presentation, we present analytical theory results, as well as PIC simulations of guide-field magnetic reconnection. We will show that the thermal electron inertia-based dissipation mechanism, expressed through nongyrotropic electron pressure tensors, remains viable in three dimensions. We will demonstrate the thermal inertia effect through studies of electron distribution functions. Furthermore, we will show that the reconnection electric field provides a transient acceleration on particles traversing the inner reconnection region. This inertial effect can be described as a diffusion-like term of the current density. which matches key features of electron distribution functions.

  4. Dissipation mechanism in 3D magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Fujimoto, Keizo

    2011-11-15

    Dissipation processes responsible for fast magnetic reconnection in collisionless plasmas are investigated using 3D electromagnetic particle-in-cell simulations. The present study revisits the two simulation runs performed in the previous study (Fujimoto, Phys. Plasmas 16, 042103 (2009)); one with small system size in the current density direction, and the other with larger system size. In the case with small system size, the reconnection processes are almost the same as those in 2D reconnection, while in the other case a kink mode evolves along the current density and deforms the current sheet structure drastically. Although fast reconnection is achieved in both the cases, the dissipation mechanism is very different between them. In the case without kink mode, the electrons transit the electron diffusion region without thermalization, so that the magnetic dissipation is supported by the inertia resistivity alone. On the other hand, in the kinked current sheet, the electrons are not only accelerated in bulk, but they are also partly scattered and thermalized by the kink mode, which results in the anomalous resistivity in addition to the inertia resistivity. It is demonstrated that in 3D reconnection the thickness of the electron current sheet becomes larger than the local electron inertia length, consistent with the theoretical prediction in Fujimoto and Sydora (Phys. Plasmas 16, 112309 (2009)).

  5. Magnetic reconnection: from MHD to QED

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bulanov, S. V.

    2017-01-01

    The paper examines the prospects of using laser plasmas for studying novel regimes of the magnetic field line reconnection and charged particle acceleration. Basic features of plasma dynamics in the three-dimensional configurations relevant to the formation of current sheets in a plasma are addressed by analyzing exact self-similar solutions of the magneto-hydrodynamics and electron magneto-hydrodynamics equations. Then the magnetic field annihilation in the ultrarelativistic limit is considered, when the opposite polarity magnetic field is generated in collisionless plasma by multiple laser pulses, in the regime with a dominant contribution of the displacement current exciting a strong large-scale electric field. This field leads to the conversion of the magnetic energy into the kinetic energy of accelerated particles inside a thin current sheet. Charged particle acceleration during magnetic field reconnection is discussed when radiation friction and quantum electrodynamics effects become dominant.

  6. Acceleration of raindrop formation due to the tangling-clustering instability in a turbulent stratified atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elperin, T.; Kleeorin, N.; Krasovitov, B.; Kulmala, M.; Liberman, M.; Rogachevskii, I.; Zilitinkevich, S.

    2015-07-01

    Condensation of water vapor on active cloud condensation nuclei produces micron-size water droplets. To form rain, they must grow rapidly into at least 50- to 100 -μ m droplets. Observations show that this process takes only 15-20 min. The unexplained physical mechanism of such fast growth is crucial for understanding and modeling of rain and known as "condensation-coalescence bottleneck in rain formation." We show that the recently discovered phenomenon of the tangling clustering instability of small droplets in temperature-stratified turbulence [Phys. Fluids 25, 085104 (2013), 10.1063/1.4816643] results in the formation of droplet clusters with drastically increased droplet number densities. The mechanism of the tangling clustering instability is much more effective than the previously considered by us the inertial clustering instability caused by the centrifugal effect of turbulent vortices. This is the reason of strong enhancement of the collision-coalescence rate inside the clusters. The mean-field theory of the droplet growth developed in this study can be useful for explanation of the observed fast growth of cloud droplets in warm clouds from the initial 1 -μ m -size droplets to 40- to 50 -μ m -size droplets within 15-20 min.

  7. Acceleration of raindrop formation due to the tangling-clustering instability in a turbulent stratified atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Elperin, T; Kleeorin, N; Krasovitov, B; Kulmala, M; Liberman, M; Rogachevskii, I; Zilitinkevich, S

    2015-07-01

    Condensation of water vapor on active cloud condensation nuclei produces micron-size water droplets. To form rain, they must grow rapidly into at least 50- to 100-μm droplets. Observations show that this process takes only 15-20 min. The unexplained physical mechanism of such fast growth is crucial for understanding and modeling of rain and known as "condensation-coalescence bottleneck in rain formation." We show that the recently discovered phenomenon of the tangling clustering instability of small droplets in temperature-stratified turbulence [Phys. Fluids 25, 085104 (2013)] results in the formation of droplet clusters with drastically increased droplet number densities. The mechanism of the tangling clustering instability is much more effective than the previously considered by us the inertial clustering instability caused by the centrifugal effect of turbulent vortices. This is the reason of strong enhancement of the collision-coalescence rate inside the clusters. The mean-field theory of the droplet growth developed in this study can be useful for explanation of the observed fast growth of cloud droplets in warm clouds from the initial 1-μm-size droplets to 40- to 50-μm-size droplets within 15-20 min.

  8. MAGNETIC ENERGY PRODUCTION BY TURBULENCE IN BINARY NEUTRON STAR MERGERS

    SciTech Connect

    Zrake, Jonathan; MacFadyen, Andrew I.

    2013-06-01

    The simultaneous detection of electromagnetic and gravitational wave emission from merging neutron star binaries would greatly aid in their discovery and interpretation. By studying turbulent amplification of magnetic fields in local high-resolution simulations of neutron star merger conditions, we demonstrate that magnetar-level ({approx}> 10{sup 16} G) fields are present throughout the merger duration. We find that the small-scale turbulent dynamo converts 60% of the randomized kinetic energy into magnetic fields on a merger timescale. Since turbulent magnetic energy dissipates through reconnection events that accelerate relativistic electrons, turbulence may facilitate the conversion of orbital kinetic energy into radiation. If 10{sup -4} of the {approx}10{sup 53} erg of orbital kinetic available gets processed through reconnection and creates radiation in the 15-150 keV band, then the fluence at 200 Mpc would be 10{sup -7} erg cm{sup -2}, potentially rendering most merging neutron stars in the advanced LIGO and Virgo detection volumes detectable by Swift BAT.

  9. Plasma Turbulence in Earth's Magnetosheath Observed by the Magnetospheric Multiscale Mission over the First Sub-Solar Apogee Pass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mackler, D. A.; Avanov, L. A.; Boardsen, S. A.; Giles, B. L.; Pollock, C.; Smith, S. E.; Uritsky, V. M.

    2016-12-01

    Magnetic reconnection, a process in which the magnetic topology undergoes multi-scale changes, is a significant mechanism for particle energization as well as energy dissipation. Reconnection is observed to occur in thin current sheets generated between two regions of magnetized plasma merging with a non-zero shear angle. Within a thinning current sheet, the dominant scale size approaches first the ion and then electron kinetic scale. The plasma becomes demagnetized, field lines transform, then once again the plasma becomes frozen-in. The reconnection process accelerates particles, leading to heated jets of plasma. Turbulence is another fundamental process in collisionless plasmas. Despite decades of turbulence studies, an essential science question remains as to how turbulent energy dissipates at small scales by heating and accelerating particles. Turbulence in both plasmas and fluids has a fundamental property in that it follows an energy cascade into smaller scales. Energy introduced into a fluid or plasma can cause large scale motion, introducing vorticity, which merge and interact to make increasingly smaller eddies. It has been hypothesized that turbulent energy in magnetized plasmas may be dissipated by magnetic reconnection, just as viscosity dissipates energy in neutral fluid turbulence. The focus of this study is to use the new high temporal resolution suite of instruments on board the Magnetospheric MultiScale (MMS) mission to explore this hypothesis. An observable feature of the energy cascade in a turbulent magnetized plasma is its similarity to classical hydrodynamics in that the Power Spectral Density (PSD) of turbulent fluctuations follows a Kolmogorov-like power law (f -5/3). We use highly accurate (0.1 nT) Flux Gate Magnetometer (FGM) data to derive the PSD as a function of frequency in the magnetic fluctuations. Given that we are able to confirm the turbulent nature of the flow field; we apply the method of Partial Variance of Increments (PVI) to

  10. Ion Bernstein waves in a magnetic reconnection region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Narita, Y.; Nakamura, R.; Baumjohann, W.; Glassmeier, K. H.; Motschmann, U.; Comisel, H.

    2015-12-01

    Four-dimensional energy spectra and a diagram for dispersion relations are determined for the first time in a magnetic reconnection region in the magnetotail using the four-point magnetometer data from the Cluster mission on a spatial scale of 200 km, about 0.1 ion inertial lengths. The energy spectra are anisotropic with an extension in the perpendicular direction and axially asymmetric with respect to the mean magnetic field. The dispersion diagram for the waves in the quasi-perpendicular directions in the plasma rest frame is in reasonably good agreement with the ion Bernstein waves particularly at the second harmonic of the proton gyro-frequency. Perpendicular-propagating ion Bernstein waves likely exist in an outflow region of magnetic reconnection. We discuss the causality of the Bernstein waves with magnetic reconnection with an estimate of the anomalous resistivity, and propose an observationally-driven model of turbulent magnetic reconnection.

  11. Anisotropic Electron Tail Generation during Tearing Mode Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DuBois, Ami M.; Almagri, Abdulgader F.; Anderson, Jay K.; Den Hartog, Daniel J.; Lee, John David; Sarff, John S.

    2017-02-01

    The first experimental evidence of anisotropic electron energization during magnetic reconnection that favors a direction perpendicular to the guide magnetic field in a toroidal, magnetically confined plasma is reported in this Letter. Magnetic reconnection plays an important role in particle heating, energization, and transport in space and laboratory plasmas. In toroidal devices like the Madison Symmetric Torus, discrete magnetic reconnection events release large amounts of energy from the equilibrium magnetic field. Fast x-ray measurements imply a non-Maxwellian, anisotropic energetic electron tail is formed at the time of reconnection. The tail is well described by a power-law energy dependence. The expected bremsstrahlung from an electron distribution with an anisotropic energetic tail (v⊥>v∥ ) spatially localized in the core region is consistent with x-ray emission measurements. A turbulent process related to tearing fluctuations is the most likely cause for the energetic electron tail formation.

  12. Onset and stagnation of reconnection in 3D geometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sears, J.; Intrator, T. P.; Weber, T. E.; Liu, D.; Pulliam, D.; Lapenta, G.; Lazarian, A.

    2011-10-01

    The bursty onset of reconnection is partly determined by a balance of macroscopic MHD forces. In a setting of multiple interacting flux ropes, there exist many individual reconnection sites, each X-line being finite in axial extent and thus intrinsically three-dimensional (3D) in structure. The balance between MHD forces and flux pile-up continuously shifts as mutually tangled flux ropes merge or bounce. The spatial scale and thus the rate of reconnection are therefore intimately related to the unsteady dynamics that may become turbulent. In the Reconnection Scaling Experiment (RSX) we study intermittent 3D reconnection along spatially localized x-lines between two or more flux ropes. The threshold of MHD instability which in this case is the kink threshold is varied by modifying the line-tying boundary conditions. For fast inflow speed of approaching ropes, there is merging and magnetic reconnection which is a well known and expected consequence of the 2D coalescence instability. On the other hand, for slower inflow speed the flux ropes bounce. The threshold appears to be the Sweet Parker speed vA /S 1 / 2 , where vA is the Alfven speed and S is the Lundquist number. The flux rope boundary conditions also influence the propagation of the merging interface and the reconnection site along the flux rope axes. (LA-UR 11-03936).

  13. Onset and stagnation of reconnection in 3D geometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sears, J.; Intrator, T.; Weber, T.; Liu, D.; Pulliam, D.; Lazarian, A.; Lapenta, G.

    2011-12-01

    The bursty onset of reconnection is partly determined by a balance of macroscopic MHD forces. In a setting of multiple interacting flux ropes, there exist many individual reconnection sites. Each X-line is finite in axial extent, leading to intrinsically three-dimensional (3D) structure. The balance between MHD forces and flux pile-up continuously shifts as mutually tangled flux ropes merge or bounce. Flux ropes may subdivide into smaller plasmoid and island structures. The spatial scale and thus the rate of reconnection are therefore intimately related to the unsteady dynamics that may become turbulent. In the Reconnection Scaling Experiment (RSX) we study intermittent 3D reconnection along spatially localized x-lines between two or more flux ropes. The threshold of MHD instability which in this case is the kink threshold is varied by modifying the line-tying boundary conditions. For fast inflow speed of approaching ropes, there is merging and magnetic reconnection which is a well known and expected consequence of the 2D coalescence instability. On the other hand, for slower inflow speed the flux ropes bounce. The threshold appears to be the Sweet Parker speed vA/S1/2, where vA is the Alfven speed and S is the Lundquist number. The flux rope boundary conditions also influence the propagation of the merging interface and the reconnection site along the flux rope axes.

  14. A new magnetic reconnection paradigm: Stochastic plasmoid chains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loureiro, Nuno

    2015-11-01

    Recent analytical and numerical research in magnetic reconnection has converged on the notion that reconnection sites (current sheets) are unstable to the formation of multiple magnetic islands (plasmoids), provided that the system is sufficiently large (or, in other words, that the Lundquist number of the plasma is high). Nonlinearly, plasmoids come to define the reconnection geometry. Their nonlinear dynamics is rather complex and best thought of as new form of turbulence whose properties are determined by continuous plasmoid formation and their subsequent ejection from the sheet, as well as the interaction (coalescence) between plasmoids of different sizes. The existence of these stochastic plasmoid chains has powerful implications for several aspects of the reconnection process, from determining the reconnection rate to the details and efficiency of the energy conversion and dissipation. In addition, the plasmoid instability may also directly bear on the little understood problem of the reconnection trigger, or onset, i.e., the abrupt transition from a slow stage of energy accumulation to a fast (explosive) stage of energy release. This talk will first provide a brief overview of these recent developments in the reconnection field. I will then discuss recent work addressing the onset problem in the context of a forming current sheet which becomes progressively more unstable to the plasmoid instability. Work partially supported by Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia via Grants UID/FIS/50010/2013 and IF/00530/2013.

  15. Measurements of Magnetic Fluctuations in Magnetic Reconnection Experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, H.; Yamada, M.; Terry, S.; Kulsrud, R.; Ren, Y.; Kuritsyn, A.

    2004-04-01

    Magnetic reconnection plays an important role in determining the evolution of magnetic topology in laboratory and astrophysical plasmas. A central question concerns why the observed reconnection rates are much faster than predictions made by classical theories, such as the Sweet-Parker model based on MHD with classical Spitzer resistivity. Often, the local resistivity is conjectured to be enhanced by micro-instabilities to accelerate reconnection rates either in the context of the Sweet-Parker model or by facilitating setup of the Pestchek model. Although it is commonly believed that there is plenty of free energy available at the reconnection region to destabilize some sort of micro-instability, a clear identification of this instability and its exact role in reconnection has never been established experimentally. We report the first such experimental evidence of a clear and positive correlation between magnetic fluctuations in the lower-hybrid frequency range and resistivity enhancement during fast reconnection in the low-collisionality regimes in the Magnetic Reconnection Experiment (MRX). The waves have been identified as right-hand polarized whistler waves, propagating obliquely to the reconnecting field, with a phase velocity comparable to the relative drift velocity. These waves are consistent with the modified two-stream instability driven by large drift speeds compared to the Alfven speed in high-beta plasmas. The short coherence length and large variation along the propagation direction indicate their strongly nonlinear nature.

  16. High-Frequency Fluctuations During Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jara-Almonte, J.; Ji, H.; Daughton, W. S.; Roytershteyn, V.; Yamada, M.; Yoo, J.; Fox, W. R., II

    2014-12-01

    During collisionless reconnection, the decoupling of the field from the plasma is known to occur only within the localized ion and electron diffusion regions, however predictions from fully kinetic simulations do not agree with experimental observations on the size of the electron diffusion region, implying differing reconnection mechanisms. Previous experiments, along with 2D and 3D simulations, have conclusively shown that this discrepancy cannot be explained by either classical collisions or Lower-Hybrid Drift Instability (Roytershtyn 2010, 2013). Due to computational limitations, however, previous simulations were constrained to have minimal scale separation between the electron skin depth and the Debye length (de/λD ~ 10), much smaller than in experiments (de/λD ~ 300). This lack of scale-separation can drastically modify the electrostatic microphysics within the diffusion layer. Using 3D, fully explicit kinetic simulations with a realistic and unprecedentedly large separation between the Debye length and the electron skin depth, de/λD = 64, we show that high frequency electrostatic waves (ω >> ωLH) can exist within the electron diffusion region. These waves generate small-scale turbulence within the electron diffusion region which acts to broaden the layer. Anomalous resistivity is also generated by the turbulence and significantly modifies the force balance. In addition to simulation results, initial experimental measurements of high frequency fluctuations (electrostatic and electromagnetic, f ≤ 1 GHz) in the Magnetic Reconnection Experiment (MRX) will be presented.

  17. Inner Plasma Structure of the Low-Latitude Reconnection Layer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zhang, Q.-H.; Dunlop, M. W.; Lockwood, M.; Lavraud, B.; Bogdanova, Y. V.; Hasegawa, H.; Yang, H. -G.; Liu, R. -Y.; Hu, H. -Q.; Zhang, B. -C.; hide

    2012-01-01

    We report a clear transition through a reconnection layer at the low-latitude magnetopause which shows a complete traversal across all reconnected field lines during northwestward interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) conditions. The associated plasma populations confirm details of the electron and ion mixing and the time history and acceleration through the current layer. This case has low magnetic shear with a strong guide field and the reconnection layer contains a single density depletion layer on the magnetosheath side which we suggest results from nearly field-aligned magnetosheath flows. Within the reconnection boundary layer, there are two plasma boundaries, close to the inferred separatrices on the magnetosphere and magnetosheath sides (Ssp and Ssh) and two boundaries associated with the Alfvén waves (or Rotational Discontinuities, RDsp and RDsh). The data are consistent with these being launched from the reconnection site and the plasma distributions are well ordered and suggestive of the time elapsed since reconnection of the field lines observed. In each sub-layer between the boundaries the plasma distribution is different and is centered around the current sheet, responsible for magnetosheath acceleration. We show evidence for a velocity dispersion effect in the electron anisotropy that is consistent with the time elapsed since reconnection. In addition, new evidence is presented for the occurrence of partial reflection of magnetosheath electrons at the magnetopause current layer.

  18. SCALING LAW OF RELATIVISTIC SWEET-PARKER-TYPE MAGNETIC RECONNECTION

    SciTech Connect

    Takahashi, Hiroyuki R.; Kudoh, Takahiro; Masada, Youhei; Matsumoto, Jin

    2011-10-01

    Relativistic Sweet-Parker-type magnetic reconnection is investigated by relativistic resistive magnetohydrodynamic (RRMHD) simulations. As an initial setting, we assume anti-parallel magnetic fields and a spatially uniform resistivity. A perturbation imposed on the magnetic fields triggers magnetic reconnection around a current sheet, and the plasma inflows into the reconnection region. The inflows are then heated due to ohmic dissipation in the diffusion region and finally become relativistically hot outflows. The outflows are not accelerated to ultrarelativistic speeds (i.e., Lorentz factor {approx_equal} 1), even when the magnetic energy dominates the thermal and rest mass energies in the inflow region. Most of the magnetic energy in the inflow region is converted into the thermal energy of the outflow during the reconnection process. The energy conversion from magnetic to thermal energy in the diffusion region results in an increase in the plasma inertia. This prevents the outflows from being accelerated to ultrarelativistic speeds. We find that the reconnection rate R obeys the scaling relation R{approx_equal}S{sup -0.5}, where S is the Lundquist number. This feature is the same as that of non-relativistic reconnection. Our results are consistent with the theoretical predictions of Lyubarsky for Sweet-Parker-type magnetic reconnection.

  19. Fast magnetic reconnection driven by intermittent resistive tearing modes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miyoshi, T.; Becchaku, M.; Kusano, K.

    2008-12-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a key process of various bursty phenomena in space plasmas. In general, a magnetic Reynolds number of the space plasma is extremely high. Therefore, since magnetic reconnection rate becomes low as magnetic Reynolds number increases within the framework of the stationary resistive MHD model, kinetic effects have been considered to realize realistic fast magnetic reconnection in modern reconnection models. However, it is thought that the MHD description is valid within a very wide scale range since a scale gap between macro and micro is so large, e.g., in the solar corona, the ratio of macro to micro will be more than 107. In this situation, how an ion-scale thin current sheet can be realized from a macro scale magnetic structure? Conversely, how the microscopic processes can affect macroscopic MHD dynamics? From the analogy of hydrodynamics, we expect that the strong MHD turbulence will be developed in the wide range. Thus, in this case, fast magnetic reconnection might be driven by the turbulence other than the kinetic effects. In this study, a very high-resolution resistive MHD simulation is performed to clarify multi-scale dynamics of the resistive tearing instability at high magnetic Reynolds number. Results show that small scale plasmoids, which seem to have an internal structure by itself, are intermittently created and ejected by the secondary tearing instability. Moreover, it seems that fast magnetic reconnection is achieved by intermittent dynamics of the plasmoids. This might support that the MHD turbulence is essential for fast magnetic reconnection at very high magnetic Reynolds number.

  20. Electron-scale measurements of magnetic reconnection in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burch, J. L.; Torbert, R. B.; Phan, T. D.; Chen, L.-J.; Moore, T. E.; Ergun, R. E.; Eastwood, J. P.; Gershman, D. J.; Cassak, P. A.; Argall, M. R.; Wang, S.; Hesse, M.; Pollock, C. J.; Giles, B. L.; Nakamura, R.; Mauk, B. H.; Fuselier, S. A.; Russell, C. T.; Strangeway, R. J.; Drake, J. F.; Shay, M. A.; Khotyaintsev, Yu. V.; Lindqvist, P.-A.; Marklund, G.; Wilder, F. D.; Young, D. T.; Torkar, K.; Goldstein, J.; Dorelli, J. C.; Avanov, L. A.; Oka, M.; Baker, D. N.; Jaynes, A. N.; Goodrich, K. A.; Cohen, I. J.; Turner, D. L.; Fennell, J. F.; Blake, J. B.; Clemmons, J.; Goldman, M.; Newman, D.; Petrinec, S. M.; Trattner, K. J.; Lavraud, B.; Reiff, P. H.; Baumjohann, W.; Magnes, W.; Steller, M.; Lewis, W.; Saito, Y.; Coffey, V.; Chandler, M.

    2016-06-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a fundamental physical process in plasmas whereby stored magnetic energy is converted into heat and kinetic energy of charged particles. Reconnection occurs in many astrophysical plasma environments and in laboratory plasmas. Using measurements with very high time resolution, NASA's Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission has found direct evidence for electron demagnetization and acceleration at sites along the sunward boundary of Earth's magnetosphere where the interplanetary magnetic field reconnects with the terrestrial magnetic field. We have (i) observed the conversion of magnetic energy to particle energy; (ii) measured the electric field and current, which together cause the dissipation of magnetic energy; and (iii) identified the electron population that carries the current as a result of demagnetization and acceleration within the reconnection diffusion/dissipation region.

  1. Electron-Scale Measurements of Magnetic Reconnection in Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burch, J. L.; Torbert, R. B.; Phan, T. D.; Chen, L.-J.; Moore, T. E.; Ergun, R. E.; Eastwood, J. P.; Gershman, D. J.; Cassak, P. A.; Argall, M. R.; hide

    2016-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a fundamental physical process in plasmas whereby stored magnetic energy is converted into heat and kinetic energy of charged particles. Reconnection occurs in many astrophysical plasma environments and in laboratory plasmas. Using measurements with very high time resolution, NASA's Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission has found direct evidence for electron demagnetization and acceleration at sites along the sunward boundary of Earth's magnetosphere where the interplanetary magnetic field reconnects with the terrestrial magnetic field. We have (i) observed the conversion of magnetic energy to particle energy; (ii) measured the electric field and current, which together cause the dissipation of magnetic energy; and (iii) identified the electron population that carries the current as a result of demagnetization and acceleration within the reconnection diffusion/dissipation region.

  2. Electron-Scale Measurements of Magnetic Reconnection in Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burch, J. L.; Torbert, R. B.; Phan, T. D.; Chen, L.-J.; Moore, T. E.; Ergun, R. E.; Eastwood, J. P.; Gershman, D. J.; Cassak, P. A.; Argall, M. R.; Wang, S.; Hesse, M.; Pollock, C. J.; Jiles, B. L.; Nakamura, R.; Mauk, B. H.; Fuselier, S. A.; Russell, C. T.; Strangeway, R. J.; Drake, J. F.; Shay, M. A.; Khotyaintsev, Yu. V.; Lindqvist, P.-A.; Marklund, G.; Wilder, F. D.

    2016-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a fundamental physical process in plasmas whereby stored magnetic energy is converted into heat and kinetic energy of charged particles. Reconnection occurs in many astrophysical plasma environments and in laboratory plasmas. Using measurements with very high time resolution, NASA's Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission has found direct evidence for electron demagnetization and acceleration at sites along the sunward boundary of Earth's magnetosphere where the interplanetary magnetic field reconnects with the terrestrial magnetic field. We have (i) observed the conversion of magnetic energy to particle energy; (ii) measured the electric field and current, which together cause the dissipation of magnetic energy; and (iii) identified the electron population that carries the current as a result of demagnetization and acceleration within the reconnection diffusion/dissipation region.

  3. Waves, instabilities and turbulence properties in Depolarisation Fronts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lapenta, Giovanni; Goldman, Martin; Newman, David L.; Olshevskyi, Vyacheslav; Eastwood, Jonathan; Divin, Andrey; Pucci, Francesco

    2016-04-01

    The new mission MMS is currently focusing on the magnetopause but we need to be ready for the study of the tail. An aspect of great importance there are the Dipolarization fronts (DF), formed by reconnection outflows interacting with the pre-existing environment. These regions are host of important energy and wave phenomena [1-3]. Our recent work has investigated these regions via fully kinetic 3D simulations [4-5]. As reported recently on Nature Physics [3], based on 3D fully kinetic simulations started with a well defined x-line, we observe that in the DF reconnection transitions towards a more chaotic regime. In the fronts an instability develops caused by the local gradients of the density and by the unfavourable acceleration and field line curvature. The consequence is the break up of the fronts in a fashion similar to the classical fluid Rayleigh-Taylor instability and the onset of waves and secondary instabilities, transitioning towards a turbulent state. We investigate here especially the wave signatures that are observed in fully 3D simulations, looking for signatures of interchange-type lower hybrid waves [8], of whistler waves [7]. The end result present a vast array of waves and it is best analysed relying on concepts mutated by the turbulence theory. The end result of these waves and particle flows [2,6] are energy exchanges. We evaluate the different terms of the energy exchanges (energy deposition, J.E, and energy fluxes) and evaluate their relative improtance. The results presented are contrasted against existing results [1,9] and will provided useful guidance in analysis of future MMS data. [1] Hamrin, Maria, et al. "The evolution of flux pileup regions in the plasma sheet: Cluster observations." Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics 118.10 (2013): 6279-6290. [2] Angelopoulos, V., et al. "Electromagnetic energy conversion at reconnection fronts." Science 341.6153 (2013): 1478-1482. [3] Zhou, Meng, et al. "THEMIS observation of multiple

  4. Modified Petschek Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kulsrud, R. M.; Yamada, M.

    2001-05-01

    There is an additional condition in Petschek's theory of magnetic reconnection that uniquely determines the length of his diffusive layer. As a result this length previously thought to be a free parameter, is actually determined by the physics that holds in the reconnection layer. If the physics is resistive MHD, then the Petschek reconnection velocity, vR reduces to that of Sweet and Parker. If the physics involves enhanced resistivity, then one finds that the reconnection velocity varies as the one third power of the maximum possible value of the enhanced resistivity, or the corresponding minimum value of the Lundquist number. If the plasma is collisionless and the resistivity is absolutely zero, and the hall terms dominate, then the rate may well be that given by Drake et. al., e. g. vR ≈ 0.1 vA .

  5. Model of Hall Reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Malyshkin, Leonid M.

    2008-11-28

    The rate of quasistationary, two-dimensional magnetic reconnection is calculated in the framework of incompressible Hall magnetohydrodynamics, which includes the Hall and electron pressure terms in Ohm's law. The Hall-magnetohydrodynamics equations are solved in a local region across the reconnection electron layer, including only the upstream region and the layer center. In the case when the ion inertial length d{sub i} is larger than the Sweet-Parker reconnection layer thickness, the dimensionless reconnection rate is found to be independent of the electrical resistivity and equal to d{sub i}/L, where L is the scale length of the external magnetic field in the upstream region outside the electron layer and the ion layer thickness is found to be d{sub i}.

  6. Model of Hall reconnection.

    PubMed

    Malyshkin, Leonid M

    2008-11-28

    The rate of quasistationary, two-dimensional magnetic reconnection is calculated in the framework of incompressible Hall magnetohydrodynamics, which includes the Hall and electron pressure terms in Ohm's law. The Hall-magnetohydrodynamics equations are solved in a local region across the reconnection electron layer, including only the upstream region and the layer center. In the case when the ion inertial length di is larger than the Sweet-Parker reconnection layer thickness, the dimensionless reconnection rate is found to be independent of the electrical resistivity and equal to di/L, where L is the scale length of the external magnetic field in the upstream region outside the electron layer and the ion layer thickness is found to be di.

  7. THEMIS Sees Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Image and Video Library

    THEMIS observations confirm for the first time that magnetic reconnection in the magnetotail triggers the onset of substorms. Substorms are the sudden violent eruptions of space weather that releas...

  8. Earth Reconnect -- July 2012

    NASA Image and Video Library

    A visualization of Earth's magnetosphere on July 15-16, 2012, shows how constant magnetic reconnection caused by an arriving coronal mass ejection, or CME, from the sun disrupted the magnetosphere,...

  9. Magnetic reconnection launcher

    DOEpatents

    Cowan, M.

    1987-04-06

    An electromagnetic launcher includes a plurality of electrical stages which are energized sequentially in the launcher with the passage of a projectiles. Each stage of the launcher includes two or more coils which are arranged coaxially on either closed-loop or straight lines to form gaps between their ends. The projectile has an electrically conductive gap-portion that passes through all the gaps of all the stages in a direction transverse to the axes of the coils. The coils receive an electric current, store magnetic energy, and convert a significant portion of the stored magnetic energy into kinetic energy of the projectile moves through the gap. The magnetic polarity of the opposing coils is in the same direction, e.g. N-S-N-S. A gap portion of the projectile may be made from aluminum and is propelled by the reconnection of magnetic flux stored in the coils which causes accelerating forces to act upon the projectile and at the horizontal surfaces of the projectile near its rear. The gap portion of the projectile may be flat, rectangular and longer than the length of the opposing coils. The gap portion of the projectile permits substantially unrestricted distribution of the induced currents so that current densities are only high where the useful magnetic force is high. This allows designs which permit ohmic oblation from the rear surfaces of the gap portion of the projectile allowing much high velocities to be achieved. An electric power apparatus controls the electric power supplied to the opposing coils until the gap portion of the projectile substantially occupies the gap between the coils, at which time the coils are supplied with peak current quickly. 8 figs.

  10. Monte Carlo modeling of ionospheric oxygen acceleration by cyclotron resonance with broad-band electromagnetic turbulence

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Retterer, John M.; Chang, Tom; Crew, G. B.; Jasperse, J. R.; Winningham, J. D.

    1987-01-01

    It is demonstrated that cyclotron resonance with observed electric field fluctuations is responsible for production of the oxygen-ion conics that are observed by the Dynamics Explorer 1 satellite in the central plasma-sheet region of the earth's magnetosphere. The ion-velocity distribution is described by a quasi-linear diffusion equation which is solved by the Monte Carlo technique. The acceleration produced by the observed wave spectrum agrees well with the ion observations, in both form and magnitude. This is believed to represent the first successful comparison of an observed conic with any theoretical model.

  11. Catalog of velocity distributions around a reconnection site in 2D PIC simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lechner, Lukas; Bourdin, Philippe-A.; Nakamura, Takuma K. M.; Nakamura, Rumi; Narita, Yasuhito

    2016-04-01

    The velocity distribution of electrons and ions are known to be a marker for regions where magnetic reconnection develops. Past theoretical and computational works demonstrated that non-gyrotropic and anisotropic distributions depending on particle meandering motions and accelerations are seen around the reconnection point. The Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission is expected to resolve such kinetic scale reconnection regions. We present a catalog of velocity distribution functions that can give hints on the location within the current sheet relative to the reconnection point, which is sometimes unclear from pure spacecraft observations. We use 2D PIC simulations of anti-parallel magnetic reconnection to obtain velocity distributions at different locations, like in the center of the reconnection site, the ion and electron diffusion regions, or the reconnection inflow and outflow regions. With sufficiently large number of particles we resolve the distribution functions also in rather small regions. Such catalog may be compared with future MMS observations of the Earth's magnetotail.

  12. Introduction to Plasma Dynamo, Reconnection and Shocks

    SciTech Connect

    Intrator, Thomas P.

    2012-08-30

    In our plasma universe, most of what we can observe is composed of ionized gas, or plasma. This plasma is a conducting fluid, which advects magnetic fields when it flows. Magnetic structure occurs from the smallest planetary to the largest cosmic scales. We introduce at a basic level some interesting features of non linear magnetohydrodynamics (MHD). For example, in our plasma universe, dynamo creates magnetic fields from gravitationally driven flow energy in an electrically conducting medium, and conversely magnetic reconnection annihilates magnetic field and accelerates particles. Shocks occur when flows move faster than the local velocity (sonic or Alfven speed) for the propagation of information. Both reconnection and shocks can accelerate particles, perhaps to gigantic energies, for example as observed with 10{sup 20} eV cosmic rays.

  13. The Guitar Nebula: A Bow Shock that Traces ISM Turbulence and Accelerates Relativistic Particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chatterjee, Shamibrata

    2005-09-01

    We propose joint Chandra and HST observations of the Guitar Nebula, an extraordinary bow-shock nebula produced by a very high-velocity but otherwise ordinary pulsar. Prior HST observations show epoch dependent changes in shock structure that signify changing ISM conditions. An enigmatic jet or filament is seen in a Chandra ACIS image (year 2000), unlike jets from the Crab or other young pulsars. New Chandra observations will reveal the relative motion of the jet and the pulsar (which has moved by 0.9 arcsec) and thus determine if self confinement or special structure in the ISM plays a dominant role in shaping the jet, and will constrain the particle acceleration mechanism. We request joint high-resolution HST observations to contemporaneously determine the ISM density profile.

  14. The Guitar Nebula: A Bow Shock that Traces ISM Turbulence and Accelerates Relativistic Particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chatterjee, Shami

    2005-07-01

    We propose joint Chandra and HST observations of the Guitar Nebula, an extraordinary bow-shock nebula produced by a very high-velocity but otherwise ordinary pulsar. Prior HST observations show epoch dependent changes in shock structure that signify changing ISM conditions. An enigmatic jet or filament is seen in a Chandra ACIS image {year 2000}, unlike jets from the Crab or other young pulsars. New Chandra observations will reveal the relative motion of the jet and the pulsar {which has moved by 0.9 arcsec} and thus determine if self confinement or special structure in the ISM plays a dominant role in shaping the jet, and will constrain the particle acceleration mechanism. We request joint high-resolution HST observations to contemporaneously determine the ISM density profile.

  15. Weak turbulence cascading effects in the acceleration and heating of ions in the solar wind

    SciTech Connect

    Moya, P. S.; Viñas, A. F.; Navarro, R.; Muñoz, V.; Valdivia, J. A.

    2014-02-01

    We study the wave-particle interaction and the evolution of electromagnetic waves propagating through a solar-wind-like plasma composed of cold electrons, isotropic protons, and a small portion of drifting anisotropic He{sup +2} (T {sub α} = 6 T {sub ∥α}) and O{sup +6} (T {sub O} = 11 T {sub ∥O}) ions as suggested in Gomberoff and Valdivia and Gomberoff et al., using two approaches. First, we use quasilinear kinetic theory to study the energy transfer between waves and particles, with the subsequent acceleration and heating of ions. Second, 1.5 D (one spatial dimension and three dimensions in velocity space) hybrid numerical simulations are performed to investigate the fully nonlinear evolution of this wave-particle interaction. Numerical results of both approaches show that the temperatures of all species evolve anisotropically, consistent with the time-dependent wave-spectrum energy. In a cascade effect, we observe the emergence of modes at frequencies higher than those initially considered, peaking at values close to the resonance frequencies of O{sup +6} ions (ω ∼ Ω {sub cO}) and He{sup +2} ions (ω ∼ Ω {sub cα}), being the peak due to O{sup +6} ions about three times bigger than the peak associated with He{sup +2} ions. Both the heating of the plasma and the energy cascade were more efficient in the nonlinear analysis than in the quasilinear one. These results suggest that this energy cascade mechanism may participate in the acceleration and heating of the solar wind plasma close to the Sun during fast streams associated with coronal holes.

  16. Exploring turbulent energy dissipation and particle energization in space plasmas: the science of THOR mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Retinò, Alessandro

    2016-04-01

    The Universe is permeated by hot, turbulent magnetized plasmas. They are found in active galactic nuclei, supernova remnants, the intergalactic and interstellar medium, as well as in the solar corona, the solar wind and the Earth's magnetosphere. Turbulent plasmas are also found in laboratory devices such as e.g. tokamaks. Our comprehension of the plasma Universe is largely based on measurements of electromagnetic radiation such as light or X-rays which originate from particles that are heated and accelerated as a result of energy dissipation in turbulent environments. Therefore it is of key importance to study and understand how plasma is energized by turbulence. Most of the energy dissipation occurs at kinetic scales, where plasma no longer behaves as a fluid and the properties of individual plasma species (electrons, protons and other ions) become important. THOR (Turbulent Heating ObserveR - http://thor.irfu.se/) is a space mission currently in Study Phase as candidate for M-class mission within the Cosmic Vision program of the European Space Agency. The scientific theme of the THOR mission is turbulent energy dissipation and particle energization in space plasmas, which ties in with ESA's Cosmic Vision science. The main focus is on turbulence and shock processes, however areas where the different fundamental processes interact, such as reconnection in turbulence or shock generated turbulence, are also of high importance. The THOR mission aims to address fundamental questions such as how plasma is heated and particles are accelerated by turbulent fluctuations at kinetic scales, how energy is partitioned among different plasma components and how dissipation operates in different regimes of turbulence. To reach the goal, a careful design of the THOR spacecraft and its payload is ongoing, together with a strong interaction with numerical simulations. Here we present the science of THOR mission and we discuss implications of THOR observations for space

  17. Impact of Heavy Ions on Reconnection Rate and Dipolarization Fronts during Magnetotail Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, H.; Ashour-Abdalla, M.; Lapenta, G.; Walker, R. J.

    2015-12-01

    Spacecraft observations show that near a magnetotail X-line, the concentration of oxygen (O+) ions varies greatly between storm-time and non-storm substorms. While O+ is a minor ion species during the non-storm substorms, it can become a major ion species during some storm-time substorms. It is important to understand how such a significant amount of O+ influences the onset of reconnection, the reconnection rate and the subsequent energy transfer at propagating dipolarization fronts (or reconnection jet fronts). In this work, we have studied the effects of O+ on the reconnection rate and DFs during magnetotail reconnection. We used a 2.5D implicit Particle-in-Cell simulation in a 2D Harris current sheet in the presence of H+ and O+ ions. We carried out a simulation with equal number densities of O+ and H+ (O+ Run) and compared the results with a simulation run using only H+ ions (H+ Run). We found that the reconnection rate in the O+ Run is much less than that in the H+ Run and identified two factors that contribute to this difference: (1) the O+ drag on the convective magnetic flux via an ambipolar electric field in O+ diffusion region; (2) the current sheet O+ inertia, which reduces the DF speed and delays the fast reconnection phase in the O+ Run. For factor (2) the O+ ions provide the main force contributions at the DFs and thereby determine the thickness of DFs provided the concentration of O+ is large enough. The velocity distribution functions of O+ have several peaks that result from ion reflection and acceleration near the DFs. These results illustrate some of the differences between the storm-time and non-storm substorms due to a significant concentration of heavy ions. They also are directly related to the expected observations by the Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission.

  18. High-Frequency Electrostatic Wave Generation and Transverse Ion Acceleration by Low Alfvenic Wave Components of BBELF Turbulence

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Singh, Nagendra; Khazanov, George; Mukhter, Ali

    2006-01-01

    Satellite observations in the auroral plasma have revealed that extremely low frequency (ELF) waves play a dominant role in the acceleration of electrons and ions in the auroral plasma. The electromagnetic components of the ELF (EMELF) waves are the electromagnetic ion cyclotron (EMIC) waves below the cyclotron frequency of the lightest ion species in a multi-ion plasma. Shear Alfv6n waves (SAWS) constitute the lowest frequency components of the ELF waves below the ion cyclotron frequency of the heaviest ion. The -2 mechanism for the transfer of energy from such EMELF waves to ions affecting transverse ion heating still remains a matter of debate. A very ubiquitous fe8ture of ELF waves now observed in several rocket and satellite experiments is that they occur in conjunction with high-frequency electrostatic waves. The frequency spectrum of the composite wave turbulence extends from the low frequency of the Alfvenic waves to the high frequency of proton plasma frequency and/or the lower hybrid frequency. The spectrum does not show any feature organized by the ion cyclotron frequencies and their harmonics. Such broadband waves consisting of both the EM and ES waves are now popularly referred as BBELF waves. We present results here from 2.5-D particle-in-cell simulations showing that the ES components are directly generated by cross- field plasma instabilities driven by the drifts of the ions and electrons in the EM component of the BBELF waves.

  19. High-Frequency Electrostatic Wave Generation and Transverse Ion Acceleration by Low Alfvenic Wave Components of BBELF Turbulence

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Singh, Nagendra; Khazanov, George; Mukhter, Ali

    2006-01-01

    Satellite observations in the auroral plasma have revealed that extremely low frequency (ELF) waves play a dominant role in the acceleration of electrons and ions in the auroral plasma. The electromagnetic components of the ELF (EMELF) waves are the electromagnetic ion cyclotron (EMIC) waves below the cyclotron frequency of the lightest ion species in a multi-ion plasma. Shear Alfv6n waves (SAWS) constitute the lowest frequency components of the ELF waves below the ion cyclotron frequency of the heaviest ion. The -2 mechanism for the transfer of energy from such EMELF waves to ions affecting transverse ion heating still remains a matter of debate. A very ubiquitous fe8ture of ELF waves now observed in several rocket and satellite experiments is that they occur in conjunction with high-frequency electrostatic waves. The frequency spectrum of the composite wave turbulence extends from the low frequency of the Alfvenic waves to the high frequency of proton plasma frequency and/or the lower hybrid frequency. The spectrum does not show any feature organized by the ion cyclotron frequencies and their harmonics. Such broadband waves consisting of both the EM and ES waves are now popularly referred as BBELF waves. We present results here from 2.5-D particle-in-cell simulations showing that the ES components are directly generated by cross- field plasma instabilities driven by the drifts of the ions and electrons in the EM component of the BBELF waves.

  20. The effect of reconnection electric field on crescent and U-shaped distribution functions in asymmetric reconnection with no guide field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bessho, N.; Chen, L.-J.; Hesse, M.; Wang, S.

    2017-07-01

    Electron distribution functions in the electron diffusion region in asymmetric reconnection without a guide field are studied by means of theory and 2-dimensional particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations. The effect of the reconnection electric field on crescent-shaped distribution functions is to broaden the thickness of the crescent. We express the thickness of the crescent as a function of field strengths, the distance from the X-line, and the time electrons spend executing meandering orbits. The electron distribution at the reconnection X-line exhibits a U-shaped structure with an opening angle in the direction of the reconnection electric field. We predict the opening angle of the U-shaped distribution by considering acceleration of the meandering electrons by the reconnection electric field. Results from particle tracing in PIC simulations and theoretical analysis agree. The above predictions provide guidance to interpret measurements by spacecraft from electron diffusion regions in asymmetric reconnection.

  1. Investigation of heavy ion contribution to dayside reconnection rate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trung, H. S.; Ilie, R.; Liemohn, M. W.

    2016-12-01

    The dynamics of the Earth's magnetosphere are driven by magnetospheric convection, the process in which energy is being transferred from the solar wind to the magnetosphere. It starts with magnetic reconnection at the dayside magnetopause. Dayside reconnection enables the Interplanetary Magnetic Field to couple to the Earth's magnetic field thereby allowing magnetosheath plasma to enter the magnetosphere. The quantitative characterization of reconnection in relation to the topology of magnetic fields, plasma composition, and plasma acceleration processes remains elusive. Last year, NASA launched the Magnetospheric Multiscale Mission (MMS) to understand magnetic reconnection by measuring plasma properties at an unprecedented scale. We seek to understand the contribution of heavy ionospheric ions to the reconnection process. We simulate the Earth's magnetosphere with the Space Weather Modeling Framework (SWMF) during September 02, 2015. This date corresponds to a MMS magnetopause crossing event identified in the MMS data. We model the magnetospheric plasma using an extended set of magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) equations including single fluid ideal MHD and multi fluid MHD. For the multi-fluid simulations, the plasma is composed of hydrogen and oxygen. The initial conditions for the simulations use solar wind observations from the ACE satellite. MMS data allows for SWMF model validation and the ability to identify the correct physics describing dayside reconnection. Thus, we can compare and isolate the effects of mass loading and mass distribution in the reconnection region.

  2. The role of compressibility in energy release by magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Birn, J.; Borovsky, J. E.; Hesse, M.

    2012-08-15

    Using resistive compressible magnetohydrodynamics, we investigate the energy release and transfer by magnetic reconnection in finite (closed or periodic) systems. The emphasis is on the magnitude of energy released and transferred to plasma heating in configurations that range from highly compressible to incompressible, based on the magnitude of the background {beta} (ratio of plasma pressure over magnetic pressure) and of a guide field in two-dimensional reconnection. As expected, the system becomes more incompressible, and the role of compressional heating diminishes, with increasing {beta} or increasing guide field. Nevertheless, compressional heating may dominate over Joule heating for values of the guide field of 2 or 3 (in relation to the reconnecting magnetic field component) and {beta} of 5-10. This result stems from the strong localization of the dissipation near the reconnection site, which is modeled based on particle simulation results. Imposing uniform resistivity, corresponding to a Lundquist number of 10{sup 3} to 10{sup 4}, leads to significantly larger Ohmic heating. Increasing incompressibility greatly reduces the magnetic flux transfer and the amount of energy released, from {approx}10% of the energy associated with the reconnecting field component, for zero guide field and low {beta}, to {approx}0.2%-0.4% for large values of the guide field B{sub y0}>5 or large {beta}. The results demonstrate the importance of taking into account plasma compressibility and localization of dissipation in investigations of heating by turbulent reconnection, possibly relevant for solar wind or coronal heating.

  3. The Role of Compressibility in Energy Release by Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Birn, J.; Borovosky, J. E.; Hesse, M.

    2012-01-01

    Using resistive compressible magnetohydrodynamics, we investigate the energy release and transfer by magnetic reconnection in finite (closed or periodic) systems. The emphasis is on the magnitude of energy released and transferred to plasma heating in configurations that range from highly compressible to incompressible, based on the magnitude of the background beta (ratio of plasma pressure over magnetic pressure) and of a guide field in two-dimensional reconnection. As expected, the system becomes more incompressible, and the role of compressional heating diminishes, with increasing beta or increasing guide field. Nevertheless, compressional heating may dominate over Joule heating for values of the guide field of 2 or 3 (in relation to the reconnecting magnetic field component) and beta of 5-10. This result stems from the strong localization of the dissipation near the reconnection site, which is modeled based on particle simulation results. Imposing uniform resistivity, corresponding to a Lundquist number of 10(exp 3) to 10(exp 4), leads to significantly larger Ohmic heating. Increasing incompressibility greatly reduces the magnetic flux transfer and the amount of energy released, from approx. 10% of the energy associated with the reconnecting field component, for zero guide field and low beta, to approx. 0.2%-0.4% for large values of the guide field B(sub y0) > 5 or large beta. The results demonstrate the importance of taking into account plasma compressibility and localization of dissipation in investigations of heating by turbulent reconnection, possibly relevant for solar wind or coronal heating.

  4. Electrostatic Wave Generation and Transverse Ion Acceleration by Alfvenic Wave Components of BBELF Turbulence

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Singh, Nagendra; Khazanov, George; Mukhter, Ali

    2007-01-01

    We present results here from 2.5-D particle-in-cell simulations showing that the electrostatic (ES) components of broadband extremely low frequency (BBELF) waves could possibly be generated by cross-field plasma instabilities driven by the relative drifts between the heavy and light ion species in the electromagnetic (EM) Alfvenic component of the BBELF waves in a multi-ion plasma. The ES components consist of ion cyclotron as well as lower hybrid modes. We also demonstrate that the ES wave generation is directly involved in the transverse acceleration of ions (TAI) as commonly measured with the BBELF wave events. The heating is affected by ion cyclotron resonance in the cyclotron modes and Landau resonance in the lower hybrid waves. In the simulation we drive the plasma by the transverse electric field, E(sub y), of the EM waves; the frequency of E(sub y), omega(sub d), is varied from a frequency below the heavy ion cyclotron frequency, OMEGA(sub h), to below the light ion cyclotron frequency, OMEGA(sub i). We have also performed simulations for E(sub y) having a continuous spectrum given by a power law, namely, |Ey| approx. omega(sub d) (exp -alpha), where the exponent alpha = _, 1, and 2 in three different simulations. The driving electric field generates polarization and ExB drifts of the ions and electrons. When the interspecies relative drifts are sufficiently large, they drive electrostatic waves, which cause perpendicular heating of both light and heavy ions. The transverse ion heating found here is discussed in relation to observations from Cluster, FAST and Freja.

  5. Gyrotropy During Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swisdak, M.

    2015-12-01

    Gyrotropic particle distributions -- those that can be characterized completely by temperatures meausred parallel and perpendicular to the local magnetic field -- are the norm in many plasmas. However, near locations where magnetic topology suddenly changes, e.g., where magnetic reconnection occurs, gyrotropy can be expected to be violated. If these departures from gyrotropy are quantifiable they are useful as probes since magnetic topological changes are, in some sense, non-local while gyrotropy can be measured locally. I will discuss previously proposed measures of gyrotropy, give examples of cases where they give unphysical results, and propose a new measure. By applying this measure to particle-in-cell simulations of reconnection I will show that it does an excellent job of localizing reconnection sites. I will also show how gyrotropy can be quickly calculated in any case where the full pressure tensor is available. This has obvious applications to the interpretation of MMS data.

  6. Particle Acceleration At Small-Scale Flux Ropes In The Heliosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zank, G. P.; Hunana, P.; Mostafavi, P.; le Roux, J. A.; Li, G.; Webb, G. M.; Khabarova, O.; Cummings, A. C.; Stone, E. C.; Decker, R. B.

    2015-12-01

    An emerging paradigm for the dissipation of magnetic turbulence in the supersonic solar wind is via localized small-scale reconnection processes, essentially between quasi-2D interacting magnetic islands or flux roped. Charged particles trapped in merging magnetic islands can be accelerated by the electric field generated by magnetic island merging and the contraction of magnetic islands. We discuss the basic physics of particle acceleration by single magnetic islands and describe how to incorporate these ideas in a distributed "sea of magnetic islands". We describe briefly some observations, selected simulations, and then introduce a transport approach for describing particle acceleration at small-scale flux ropes. We discuss particle acceleration in the supersonic solar wind and extend these ideas to particle acceleration at shock waves. These models are appropriate to the acceleration of both electrons and ions. We describe model predictions and supporting observations.

  7. Forced magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Hahm, T.S.; Kulsrud, R.M.

    1984-11-01

    By studying a simple model problem, we examine the time evolution of magnetic field islands which are induced by perturbing the boundary surrounding an incompressible plasma with a resonant surface inside. We find that for sufficiently small boundary perturbations, the reconnection and island formation process occurs on the tearing mode time scale defined by Furth, Killeen, and Rosenbluth. For larger perturbations the time scale is that defined by Rutherford. The resulting asymptotic equilibrium is such that surface currents in the resonant region vanish. A detailed analytical picture of this reconnection process is presented.

  8. Rapid magnetic reconnection caused by finite amplitude fluctuations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Matthaeus, W. H.; Lamkin, S. L.

    1985-01-01

    The nonlinear dynamics of the magnetohydrodynamic sheet pinch have been investigated as an unforced initial value problem for large scale Reynolds numbers up to 1000. Reconnection is triggered by adding to the sheet pinch a small but finite level of broadband random perturbations. Effects of turbulence in the solutions include the production of reconnected magnetic islands at rates that are insensitive to resistivity at early times. This is explained by noting that electric field fluctuations near the X point produce irregularities in the vector potential, sometimes taking the form of 'magnetic bubbles', which allow rapid change of field topology.

  9. Relating reconnection rate, exhaust structure and effective resistivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, Nagendra

    2014-03-01

    The magnetic reconnection structure consists of a central diffusion region (CDR) and a cone or wedge shaped reconnection exhaust containing accelerated plasma flows and electromagnetic fluctuations. We predict here the relationship among the exhaust half-cone angle (θe), the half width (w) of the CDR, the outflow velocity Vo, and the effective resistivity (ηeff), which includes the effects of all the nonideal terms in the generalized Ohm's law. The effective resistivity is defined as the ratio of reconnection electric field Erec to the current density Jy at the X point and it essentially represents the loss of momentum from the current-carrying plasma particles due to scattering by waves, their inertia or outflux from the CDR. The relation is checked against relevant results previously reported from laboratory experiments, space observations, and simulations, showing excellent agreement. The relation can be used for estimating the ad-hoc effective resistivity often used in magnetohydrodynamic modeling of reconnection.

  10. Relativistic magnetic reconnection driven by intense lasers in preformed plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Campbell, Paul; Raymond, A.; McKelvey, A.; Maksimchuk, A.; Nees, J.; Yanovsky, V.; Krushelnick, K.; Dong, C. F.; Fox, W.; Zulick, C.; Wei, M. S.; Chen, H.; Chvykov, V.; Mileham, C.; Nilson, P. M.; Stoeckl, C.; Thomas, A. G. R.; Willingale, L.

    2016-10-01

    Experiments were performed with the OMEGA EP laser system focusing the two short pulse beams to high intensities on foil targets. Relativistic electrons drive fast reconnection self-generated magnetic fields. To investigate the effects of a preformed plasma on this relativistic magnetic reconnection, a long pulse UV beam was used to ablate the front surface of layered targets. The density and reconnection dynamics in the preformed copper or CH plasma were diagnosed with a 4 ω optical probe. A spherically bent crystal imaged characteristic copper Kα emission induced by fast electrons accelerated into the target in the reconnection diffusion region. This work was supported by the Department of Energy National Nuclear Security Administration under Award Number DE-NA0002727.

  11. Asymmetric evolution of magnetic reconnection in collisionless accretion disk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shirakawa, Keisuke; Hoshino, Masahiro

    2014-05-01

    An evolution of a magnetic reconnection in a collisionless accretion disk is investigated using a 2.5 dimensional hybrid code simulation. In astrophysical disks, magnetorotational instability (MRI) is considered to play an important role by generating turbulence in the disk and contributes to an effective angular momentum transport through a turbulent viscosity. Magnetic reconnection, on the other hand, also plays an important role on the evolution of the disk through a dissipation of a magnetic field enhanced by a dynamo effect of MRI. In this study, we developed a hybrid code to calculate an evolution of a differentially rotating system. With this code, we first confirmed a linear growth of MRI. We also investigated a behavior of a particular structure of a current sheet, which would exist in the turbulence in the disk. From the calculation of the magnetic reconnection, we found an asymmetric structure in the out-of-plane magnetic field during the evolution of reconnection, which can be understood by a coupling of the Hall effect and the differential rotation. We also found a migration of X-point whose direction is determined only by an initial sign of J0×Ω0, where J0 is the initial current density in the neutral sheet and Ω0 is the rotational vector of the background Keplerian rotation. Associated with the migration of X-point, we also found a significant enhancement of the perpendicular magnetic field compared to an ordinary MRI. MRI-Magnetic reconnection coupling and the resulting magnetic field enhancement can be an effective process to sustain a strong turbulence in the accretion disk and to a transport of angular momentum.

  12. Asymmetric evolution of magnetic reconnection in collisionless accretion disk

    SciTech Connect

    Shirakawa, Keisuke Hoshino, Masahiro

    2014-05-15

    An evolution of a magnetic reconnection in a collisionless accretion disk is investigated using a 2.5 dimensional hybrid code simulation. In astrophysical disks, magnetorotational instability (MRI) is considered to play an important role by generating turbulence in the disk and contributes to an effective angular momentum transport through a turbulent viscosity. Magnetic reconnection, on the other hand, also plays an important role on the evolution of the disk through a dissipation of a magnetic field enhanced by a dynamo effect of MRI. In this study, we developed a hybrid code to calculate an evolution of a differentially rotating system. With this code, we first confirmed a linear growth of MRI. We also investigated a behavior of a particular structure of a current sheet, which would exist in the turbulence in the disk. From the calculation of the magnetic reconnection, we found an asymmetric structure in the out-of-plane magnetic field during the evolution of reconnection, which can be understood by a coupling of the Hall effect and the differential rotation. We also found a migration of X-point whose direction is determined only by an initial sign of J{sub 0}×Ω{sub 0}, where J{sub 0} is the initial current density in the neutral sheet and Ω{sub 0} is the rotational vector of the background Keplerian rotation. Associated with the migration of X-point, we also found a significant enhancement of the perpendicular magnetic field compared to an ordinary MRI. MRI-Magnetic reconnection coupling and the resulting magnetic field enhancement can be an effective process to sustain a strong turbulence in the accretion disk and to a transport of angular momentum.

  13. Vortex Reconnection in Normal and Superfluids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koplik, Joel

    An example of vortex reconnection is shown in a time sequence in Fig. 1, wherein two distinct vortex filaments in a fluid move together, merge, and then divide into two or more filaments moving away, with part of one initial filament connected to part of the other. The physics underlying this example [1] will be presented later, but the key feature is the evident change in the topology of the vortices. In this lecture, we will discuss vortex reconnection in both normal and superfluids, emphasizing the relevance of the process to their respective turbulent flows, the similarities between the two cases, and the computational issues. The lecture is aimed at a fairly general audience: no detailed knowledge of fluid mechanics is assumed beyond a nodding acquaintance with the Navier-Stokes equation, and nothing about superfluidity beyond the idea of a two-fluid system with an quantum-mechanically condensed component, and a willingness to accept the Gross-Pitaevskii model for the latter. My emp hasis will be on the superfluid case, and the reconnection process in normal fluids is discussed in more detail in the cited literature. My original work reviewed here was done in collaboration with Herbert Levine. Related and more recent work along these lines is described in the lectures by Adams and Roberts in this volume.

  14. Laboratory Experiment of Magnetic Reconnection between Merging Flux Tubes with Strong Guide FIeld

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Inomoto, M.; Kamio, S.; Kuwahata, A.; Ono, Y.

    2013-12-01

    Magnetic reconnection governs variety of energy release events in the universe, such as solar flares, geomagnetic substorms, and sawtooth crash in laboratory nuclear fusion experiments. Differently from the classical steady reconnection models, non-steady behavior of magnetic reconnection is often observed. In solar flares, intermittent enhancement of HXR emission is observed synchronously with multiple ejection of plammoids [1]. In laboratory reconnection experiments, the existence of the guide field, that is perpendicular to the reconnection field, makes significant changes on reconnection process. Generally the guide field will slow down the reconnection rate due to the increased magnetic pressure inside the current sheet. It also brings about asymmetric structure of the separatrices or effective particle acceleration in collisionless conditions. We have conducted laboratory experiments to study the behavior of the guide-field magnetic reconnection using plasma merging technique (push reconnection). Under substantial guide field even larger than the reconnection field, the reconnection generally exhibits non-steady feature which involves intermittent detachment of X-point and reconnection current center[2]. Transient enhancement of reconnection rate is observed simultaneously with the X-point motion[3]. We found two distinct phenomena associated with the guide-field non-steady reconnection. The one is the temporal and localized He II emission from X-point region, suggesting the production of energetic electrons which could excite the He ions in the vicinity of the X-point. The other is the excitation of large-amplitude electromagnetic waves which have similar properties with kinetic Alfven waves, whose amplitude show positive correlation with the enhancement of the reconnection electric field[4]. Electron beam instability caused by the energetic electrons accelerated to more than twice of the electron thermal velocity could be a potential driver of the

  15. Activation of MHD reconnection on ideal timescales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Landi, S.; Papini, E.; Del Zanna, L.; Tenerani, A.; Pucci, F.

    2017-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection in laboratory, space and astrophysical plasmas is often invoked to explain explosive energy release and particle acceleration. However, the timescales involved in classical models within the macroscopic MHD regime are far too slow to match the observations. Here we revisit the tearing instability by performing visco-resistive two-dimensional numerical simulations of the evolution of thin current sheets, for a variety of initial configurations and of values of the Lunquist number S, up to 107. Results confirm that when the critical aspect ratio of S 1/3 is reached in the reconnecting current sheets, the instability proceeds on ideal (Alfvénic) macroscopic timescales, as required to explain observations. Moreover, the same scaling is seen to apply also to the local, secondary reconnection events triggered during the nonlinear phase of the tearing instability, thus accelerating the cascading process to increasingly smaller spatial and temporal scales. The process appears to be robust, as the predicted scaling is measured both in inviscid simulations and when using a Prandtl number P  =  1 in the viscous regime.

  16. Reconnecting Flux Ropes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gekelman, Walter; van Compernolle, Bart

    2012-10-01

    Magnetic flux ropes are due to helical currents and form a dense carpet of arches on the surface of the sun. Occasionally one tears loose as a coronal mass ejection and its rope structure is detected by satellites close to the earth. Current sheets can tear into filaments and these are nothing other than flux ropes. Ropes are not static, they exert mutual JxB forces causing them to twist about each other and merge. Kink instabilities cause them to violently smash into each other and reconnect at the point of contact. We report on experiments done in the large plasma device (LAPD) at UCLA (L=17m,dia=60cm,0.3<=B0z<=2.5kG,n˜2x10^12cm-3)on three dimensional flux ropes. Two, three or more magnetic flux ropes are generated from initially adjacent pulsed current channels in a background magnetized plasma. The currents and magnetic fields form exotic shapes with no ignorable direction and no magnetic nulls. Volumetric space-time data show multiple reconnection sites with time-dependent locations. The concept of a quasi-separatrix layer (QSL), a tool to understand 3D reconnection without null points. In our experiment the QSL is a narrow ribbon-like region(s) that twists between field lines. Within the QSL(s) field lines that start close to one another rapidly diverge as they pass through one or more reconnection regions. When the field lines are tracked they are observed to slip along the QSL when reconnection occurs. The Heating and other co-existing waves will be presented.

  17. Experimental study of energy conversion in the magnetic reconnection layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamada, Masaaki

    2014-10-01

    Magnetic reconnection, in which magnetic field lines break and reconnect to change their topology, occurs throughout the universe: in solar flares, the earth's magnetosphere, star forming galaxies, and laboratory fusion plasmas. The essential feature of reconnection is that it energizes plasma particles by converting magnetic energy to particle energy; this process both accelerates and heats the plasma particles. Despite the recent advances of reconnection research, the exact mechanisms for bulk plasma heating, particle acceleration, and energy flow channels remain unresolved. In this work, the mechanisms responsible for the energization of plasma particles in the magnetic reconnection layer are investigated in the MRX device together with a quantitative evaluation of the conversion of magnetic energy to ions and electrons. A comprehensive analysis of the reconnection layer is made in terms of two-fluid physics based on the measurements of two-dimensional profiles of 1) electric potential, 2) flow vectors of electrons and ions, and 3) the electron temperature, Te and the ion temperature, Ti in the layer. It is experimentally verified that a saddle shaped electrostatic electric potential profile is formed in the reconnection plane. Ions are accelerated across the separatrices by the strong electrostatic field and enter the exhaust region where they become thermalized. Electron heating is observed to extend beyond the electron diffusion region, and non-classical heating mechanisms associated with high frequency fluctuations is found to play a role. Our quantitative analysis of the energy transport processes and energy inventory concludes that more than 50% of magnetic energy is converted to plasma particles, of which 2/3 transferred to ions and 1/3 to electrons. The results which demonstrate that conversion of magnetic energy occurs in a significantly larger region than theoretically considered before, are compared with the two-fluid simulations and the recent space

  18. Secondary Instability in 3-D Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, X.; Lin, Y.; Chen, L.

    2016-12-01

    3-D magnetic reconnection is investigated using the gyrokinetic-electron and fully-kinetic ion (GeFi) particle simulation model. The simulation is carried out in the force free current sheet for cases with a strong guide field BG as occurring in the solar and laboratory plasmas. It is found that, following the growth of the primary reconnection, a secondary instability is excited in the separatrix region, which leads to the electron heating and acceleration in the direction parallel to the magnetic field. The instability is due to the 3-D physics associated with a finite kz, where kz is the wave number along the guide field direction. Dependences of the growth rate of the secondary instability on the electron-ion resistivity, the ion-to-electron mass ratio mi/me, beta values, and the half-width of the current sheet are investigated. It is demonstrated that the secondary instability is of the magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) kink type.

  19. Reconnection on the Sun

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2016-05-01

    Because the Sun is so close, it makes an excellent laboratory to study processes we cant examinein distant stars. One openquestion is that of how solar magnetic fields rearrange themselves, producing the tremendous releases of energy we observe as solar flares and coronal mass ejections (CMEs).What is Magnetic Reconnection?Magnetic reconnection occurs when a magnetic field rearranges itself to move to a lower-energy state. As field lines of opposite polarity reconnect, magnetic energy is suddenly converted into thermal and kinetic energy.This processis believed to be behind the sudden releases of energy from the solar surface in the form of solar flares and CMEs. But there are many different models for how magnetic reconnection could occur in the magnetic field at the Suns surface, and we arent sure which one of these reconnection types is responsible for the events we see.Recently, however, several studies have been published presenting some of the first observational support of specific reconnection models. Taken together, these observations suggest that there are likely several different types of reconnection happening on the solar surface. Heres a closer look at two of these recent publications:A pre-eruption SDO image of a flaring region (b) looks remarkably similar to a 3D cartoon for typical breakout configuration (a). Click for a closer look! [Adapted from Chen et al. 2016]Study 1:Magnetic BreakoutLed by Yao Chen (Shandong University in China), a team of scientists has presented observations made by the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) of a flare and CME event that appears to have been caused by magnetic breakout.In the magnetic breakout model, a series of loops in the Suns lower corona are confined by a surrounding larger loop structure called an arcade higher in the corona. As the lower loops push upward, reconnection occurs in the upper corona, removing the overlying, confining arcade. Without that extra confinement, the lower coronal loops expand upward

  20. High power heating of magnetic reconnection in merging tokamak experiments

    SciTech Connect

    Ono, Y.; Tanabe, H.; Gi, K.; Watanabe, T.; Ii, T.; Yamada, T.; Gryaznevich, M.; Scannell, R.; Conway, N.; Crowley, B.; Michael, C.

    2015-05-15

    Significant ion/electron heating of magnetic reconnection up to 1.2 keV was documented in two spherical tokamak plasma merging experiment on MAST with the significantly large Reynolds number R∼10{sup 5}. Measured 1D/2D contours of ion and electron temperatures reveal clearly energy-conversion mechanisms of magnetic reconnection: huge outflow heating of ions in the downstream and localized heating of electrons at the X-point. Ions are accelerated up to the order of poloidal Alfven speed in the reconnection outflow region and are thermalized by fast shock-like density pileups formed in the downstreams, in agreement with recent solar satellite observations and PIC simulation results. The magnetic reconnection efficiently converts the reconnecting (poloidal) magnetic energy mostly into ion thermal energy through the outflow, causing the reconnection heating energy proportional to square of the reconnecting (poloidal) magnetic field B{sub rec}{sup 2}  ∼  B{sub p}{sup 2}. The guide toroidal field B{sub t} does not affect the bulk heating of ions and electrons, probably because the reconnection/outflow speeds are determined mostly by the external driven inflow by the help of another fast reconnection mechanism: intermittent sheet ejection. The localized electron heating at the X-point increases sharply with the guide toroidal field B{sub t}, probably because the toroidal field increases electron confinement and acceleration length along the X-line. 2D measurements of magnetic field and temperatures in the TS-3 tokamak merging experiment also reveal the detailed reconnection heating mechanisms mentioned above. The high-power heating of tokamak merging is useful not only for laboratory study of reconnection but also for economical startup and heating of tokamak plasmas. The MAST/TS-3 tokamak merging with B{sub p} > 0.4 T will enables us to heat the plasma to the alpha heating regime: T{sub i} > 5 keV without using any additional heating facility.

  1. Three-dimensional outflow jets generated in collisionless magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujimoto, Keizo

    2016-10-01

    The present study proposes a new theoretical model generating three-dimensional (3-D) outflow jets in collisionless magnetic reconnection by means of a large-scale particle-in-cell simulation. The key mechanism is the formation of 3-D flux ropes arising in the turbulent electron current layer formed around the magnetic x line. The scale of the flux ropes along the current density is determined by the wavelength of an electron flow shear mode which is a macroscopic scale larger than the typical kinetic scales. The 3-D flux ropes are intermittently ejected from the current layer and regulates the outflow jets into three dimensions. The gross reconnection rate is sufficiently large, since reconnection takes place almost uniformly along the x line.

  2. Fluctuation dynamo based on magnetic reconnections

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baggaley, A. W.; Shukurov, A.; Barenghi, C. F.; Subramanian, K.

    2010-01-01

    We develop a new model of the fluctuation dynamo in which the magnetic field is confined to thin flux ropes advected by a multi-scale flow which models turbulence. Magnetic dissipation occurs only via reconnections of flux ropes. The model is particularly suitable for rarefied plasma, such as the solar corona or galactic halos. We investigate the kinetic energy release into heat, mediated by dynamo action, both in our model and by solving the induction equation with the same flow. We find that the flux rope dynamo is more than an order of magnitude more efficient at converting mechanical energy into heat. The probability density of the magnetic energy released during reconnections has a power-law form with the slope -3, consistent with the solar corona heating by nanoflares. We also present a nonlinear extension of the model. This shows that a plausible saturation mechanism of the fluctuation dynamo is the suppression of turbulent magnetic diffusivity, due to suppression of random stretching at the location of the flux ropes. We confirm that the probability distribution function of the magnetic line curvature has a power-law form suggested by \\citet{Sheck:2002b}. We argue, however, using our results that this does not imply a persistent folded structure of magnetic field, at least in the nonlinear stage.

  3. Transition in Electron Physics of Magnetic Reconnection in Weakly Collisional Plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le, A.; Roytershteyn, V.; Karimabadi, H.; Daughton, W. S.; Egedal, J.; Forest, C.

    2013-12-01

    Using self-consistent fully kinetic simulations with a Monte-Carlo treatment of the Coulomb collision operator, we explore the transition between collisional and kinetic regimes of magnetic reconnection in high-Lundquist-number current sheets. Recent research in collisionless reconnection has shown that electron kinetic physics plays a key role in the evolution. Large-scale electron current sheets may form, leading to secondary island formation and turbulent flux rope interactions in 3D. The new collisional simulations demonstrate how increasing collisionality modifies or eliminates these electron structures in the kinetic regimes. Additional basic questions that are addressed include how the reconnection rate and the release of magnetic energy into electrons and ions vary with collisionality. The numerical study provides insight into reconnection in dense regions of the solar corona, the solar wind, and upcoming laboratory experiments at MRX (Princeton) and MPDX (UW-Madison). The implications of these results for studies of turbulence dissipation in weakly collisional plasmas are discussed.

  4. Proxy and in-situ studies of dayside magnetopause reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Scurry, L.; Russell, C.T.; Gosling, J.T.

    1992-12-01

    The functional dependence of magnetic reconnection on solar wind parameters is examined utilizing the am geomagnetic index and satellite observations at the magnetopause. Several parameters in the solar wind are found to control geomagnetic activity. Reconnection is found to be most efficient when the interplanetary magnetic field is southward, although some activity remains when the IMF is horizontal and slightly northward. The reconnection efficiency increases with the solar wind dynamic pressure but decreases when the Mach number is greater than 7.5. These results are compared with the functional dependencies found by correlating solar wind and magnetosheath measurements with observations of accelerated tows at the magnetopause. Accelerated tows are found to occur most often when the interplanetary magnetic field is directed southward. However, accelerated flows do occur when the IMF is horizontal and northward. Accelerated flows are also affected by the magnetosheath beta such that higher beta inhibits their occurrence. The location of accelerated tows indicates that reconnection occurs mainly at the subsolar point.

  5. Proxy and in-situ studies of dayside magnetopause reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Scurry, L.; Russell, C.T. . Inst. of Geophysics and Planetary Physics); Gosling, J.T. )

    1992-01-01

    The functional dependence of magnetic reconnection on solar wind parameters is examined utilizing the am geomagnetic index and satellite observations at the magnetopause. Several parameters in the solar wind are found to control geomagnetic activity. Reconnection is found to be most efficient when the interplanetary magnetic field is southward, although some activity remains when the IMF is horizontal and slightly northward. The reconnection efficiency increases with the solar wind dynamic pressure but decreases when the Mach number is greater than 7.5. These results are compared with the functional dependencies found by correlating solar wind and magnetosheath measurements with observations of accelerated tows at the magnetopause. Accelerated tows are found to occur most often when the interplanetary magnetic field is directed southward. However, accelerated flows do occur when the IMF is horizontal and northward. Accelerated flows are also affected by the magnetosheath beta such that higher beta inhibits their occurrence. The location of accelerated tows indicates that reconnection occurs mainly at the subsolar point.

  6. Magnetic field amplification and particle acceleration in high Mach number shocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fiuza, Frederico

    2015-11-01

    The amplification of magnetic fields is a central ingredient in understanding particle acceleration in supernova remnant shocks. I will present results from multi-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations of shock formation and particle acceleration for different magnetization levels. These first principles simulations, for unprecedented temporal and spatial scales, help bridge the gap between fully kinetic and hybrid modeling. The results show that depending on the magnetization the turbulence responsible for particle injection and acceleration is determined by different processes, which include Weibel and Bell-type instabilities, but also magnetic reconnection. At high Mach numbers both electrons and ions are shown to be efficiently injected and accelerated. I will discuss the importance of these results for current astrophysical models and the possibility of studying these magnetic field amplification and particle acceleration processes in near future high energy density laboratory experiments.

  7. Energetic Particles of keV-MeV Energies Observed near Reconnecting Current Sheets at 1 au

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khabarova, Olga V.; Zank, Gary P.

    2017-07-01

    We provide evidence for particle acceleration up to ˜5 MeV at reconnecting current sheets in the solar wind based on both case studies and a statistical analysis of the energetic ion and electron flux data from the five Advanced Composition Explorer Electron, Proton, and Alpha Monitor (EPAM) detectors. The case study of a typical reconnection exhaust event reveals (i) a small-scale peak of the energetic ion flux observed in the vicinity of the reconnection exhaust and (ii) a long-timescale atypical energetic particle event (AEPE) encompassing the reconnection exhaust. AEPEs associated with reconnecting strong current sheets last for many hours, even days, as confirmed by statistical studies. The case study shows that time-intensity profiles of the ion flux may vary significantly from one EPAM detector to another partially because of the local topology of magnetic fields, but mainly because of the impact of upstream magnetospheric events; therefore, the occurrence of particle acceleration can be hidden. The finding of significant particle energization within a time interval of ±30 hr around reconnection exhausts is supported by a superposed epoch analysis of 126 reconnection exhaust events. We suggest that energetic particles initially accelerated via prolonged magnetic reconnection are trapped and reaccelerated in small- or medium-scale magnetic islands surrounding the reconnecting current sheet, as predicted by the transport theory of Zank et al. Other mechanisms of initial particle acceleration can contribute also.

  8. Evidence for substantial increases in energetic particle intensity associated with reconnecting current sheets in the solar wind

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khabarova, Olga; Zank, Gary P.

    2017-04-01

    We provide evidence for particle acceleration up to 5 MeV at reconnecting current sheets in the solar wind based on both case studies and a statistical analysis of the energetic ion and electron flux data from the five ACE EPAM detectors. The case study of a typical reconnection exhaust event reveals (i) a small-scale peak of the energetic ion flux observed in the vicinity of the reconnection exhaust, (ii) a long-time-scale atypical energetic particle event (AEPE) encompassing the reconnection exhaust. AEPEs associated with reconnecting strong current sheets last for many hours, even days, as confirmed by statistical studies. The case study shows that time-intensity profiles of the ion flux may vary significantly from one EPAM detector to another partially because of the local topology of magnetic fields, but mainly because of the impact of upstream magnetospheric events; therefore the occurrence of particle acceleration can be hidden. The finding of significant particle energization within a time interval of +/-30 hours around reconnection exhausts is supported by a superposed epoch analysis of 126 reconnection exhaust events. We suggest that energetic particles initially accelerated via prolonged magnetic reconnection are trapped and re-accelerated in small-scale magnetic islands surrounding the reconnecting current sheet, as predicted by the transport theory of Zank et al.

  9. Colour reconnections in Herwig++

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gieseke, Stefan; Röhr, Christian; Siódmok, Andrzej

    2012-11-01

    We describe the implementation details of the colour reconnection model in the event generator Herwig++. We study the impact on final-state observables in detail and confirm the model idea from colour preconfinement on the basis of studies within the cluster hadronization model. Moreover, we show that the description of minimum bias and underlying event data at the LHC is improved with this model and present results of a tune to available data.

  10. Laboratory Experiments on Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamada, Masaaki

    2010-05-01

    Magnetic reconnection, a topological rearrangement of magnetic field lines, is one of the key self-organization processes in laboratory and astrophysical plasmas. This talk presents the fundamental physics of magnetic reconnection reviewing the recent significant progress in laboratory experiments. Sawtooth relaxation in a tokamak plasma, which represents a repetitive change of the electron temperature profile, provides a good example of magnetic reconnection. During the relaxation phase of the sawtooth, a rapid flattening of the electron temperature profile occurs and the pitch of field lines changes suddenly as the field lines break and rearrange themselves to form a new topological profile. In the reversed field pinch (RFP) and spheromak plasmas, a sudden re-arrangement of field lines in an inner flux surface can trigger another rearrangement in the outer flux surfaces, leading to a global magnetic relaxation event. Magnetic reconnection physics has been investigated in a variety of laboratory experiments dedicated for reconnection research. These laboratory experiments have made important contributions to recent advances in our understanding of magnetic reconnection. Significant findings are as follows: 1) The reconnection dynamics are determined both by local and global conditions, 2) The profiles of the reconnection layer and reconnection rate change drastically as the plasma's collisionality is reduced, 3) Two-fluid dynamics have been verified through experimental identification of both the ion and electron diffusion layers, 4) Electrostatic and electromagnetic fluctuations and their spatial profiles were measured in the reconnection layer of both laboratory and space plasmas with notable similarities, and 5) The reconnection rate increases significantly when the ratio of the electron mean free path to the scale length approaches unity. A new scaling of reconnection resistivity with respect to this ratio has been obtained from the laboratory results. The

  11. Interchange Slip-Running Reconnection and Sweeping SEP-Beams

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Masson, S.; Aulanier, G.; Pariat, E.; Klein, K.-L.

    2011-01-01

    We present a new model to explain how particles, accelerated at a reconnection site that is not magnetically connected to the Earth, could eventually propagate along the well-connected open flux tube. Our model is based on the results of a low-beta resistive magnetohydrodynamics simulation of a three-dimensional line-tied and initially current-free bipole, that is embedded in a non-uniform open potential field. The topology of this configuration is that of an asymmetric coronal null-point, with a closed fan surface and an open outer spine. When driven by slow photospheric shearing motions, field lines, initially fully anchored below the fan dome, reconnect at the null point, and jump to the open magnetic domain. This is the standard interchange mode as sketched and calculated in 2D. The key result in 3D is that, reconnected open field lines located in the vicinity of the outer spine, keep reconnecting continuously, across an open quasi-separatrix layer, as previously identified for non-open-null-point reconnection. The apparent slipping motion of these field lines leads to form an extended narrow magnetic flux tube at high altitude. Because of the slip-running reconnection, we conjecture that if energetic particles would be travelling through, or be accelerated inside, the diffusion region, they would be successively injected along continuously reconnecting field lines that are connected farther and farther from the spine. At the scale of the full Sun, owing to the super-radial expansion of field lines below 3 solar radius, such energetic particles could easily be injected in field lines slipping over significant distances, and could eventually reach the distant flux tube that is well-connected to the Earth.

  12. Effect of ambient turbulence on the evolution of a counter-rotating vortex pair.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmed, Madiha; Hussain, Fazle

    2007-11-01

    In an attempt to explain and develop strategy for control of aircraft wake vortex in a turbulent atmosphere, the evolution of a vortex column dipole (a pair of counter-rotating vortices) in the presence of fine-scale (homogeneous and isotropic) freestream turbulence is studied via DNS of the Navier-Stokes equations. The freestream turbulence is found to significantly accelerate the vortex decay via a complex vortex-turbulence coupling scenario, which we study. External fine-scale turbulence is first stretched into azimuthal filaments (see also Melander & Hussain, PRE, vol 48 (1993)) which merge into threads through successive pairings and advect along the column dipole by self-induction. Oppositely-directed advection of opposite-signed threads forms thread dipoles which then move outward by mutual-induction and also eject column fluid (see also J. S. Marshall, JFM, vol 345 (1997)). This has the effect of enhancing both mixing with the ambient fluid and the nominally planar reconnection (cross-diffusion) between the column vortex pair. We then further explore the column vortex dipole-turbulence interaction scenario and vortex decay dependence on parameters like the column vortex Reynolds number, separation of the vortices, and the intensity and scale of freestream turbulence.

  13. Effects of guide field in driven magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, C. Z.; Inoue, S.; Horiuchi, R.; Ono, Y.; Guo, X.

    2016-10-01

    Decoupling of electron and ion dynamics is the key physical process in the magnetic reconnection layer. It leads to the generation of parallel E-field and in-plane electrostatic E-field, and determines how particles gain energy. For antiparallel magnetic reconnection (zero guide field case), the electron and ion dynamics decoupling is due to meandering particle (unmagnetized) orbits in the field reversal region and particle acceleration by parallel electric field in the separatrix region. The parallel E-field is produced mainly from the driven inductive E-field due to the quadrupole out-of-plane magnetic field generation. The decoupling of electron and ion dynamics causes charge separation which produces the in-plane electrostatic E-field. If the guide field is stronger than the reconnecting magnetic field, both electrons and ions are magnetized in the entire magnetic reconnection domain, and the electron-ion dynamics decoupling process changes from the zero guide field case. Then, the structure of parallel and electrostatic E-fields, and thus how electrons/ions gain energy also changes. We will explain the physical mechanisms of electron-ion dynamics decoupling on the E-field generation, and how electron and ion are heated/accelerated based on the driven reconnection simulation results.

  14. Study of Magnetic Reconnection in Plasma: how it works and energizes plasma particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamada, Masaaki

    2015-11-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a phenomenon of nature in which magnetic field lines change their topology in plasma and convert magnetic energy to plasma particles by acceleration and heating. It is a fundamental process at work in laboratory, space and astrophysical plasmas. Magnetic reconnection occurs throughout the Universe: in star forming galaxies; around supernovae; in solar flares; in the earth's magnetosphere; and in fusion plasmas. One of the great challenges in reconnection research has been to understand why reconnection occurs so much faster than predicted by MHD theory. This talk begins with a review of recent discoveries and findings in the research of fast magnetic reconnection in laboratory plasmas and space astrophysical plasmas. I compare the experimental results and space observations with theory and numerical simulations. The collaboration between space and laboratory scientists in reconnection research has reached a point where we can directly compare measurements of the reconnection layer using recently-advanced numerical simulations. In spite of the huge difference in physical scales, we find remarkable commonality between the characteristics of the magnetic reconnection in laboratory and space-astrophysical plasmas. In this talk, I will focus especially on the energy flow, a key feature of reconnection process. We have recently reported our results on the energy conversion and partitioning in a laboratory reconnection layer. In Magnetic Reconnection Experiment (MRX) the mechanisms of ion acceleration and heating are identified and a systematic study of the quantitative inventory of converted energy within a reconnection layer has been made with a well-defined but variable boundary. The measured energy partition in a reconnection region of similar effective size (L ~ 3 ion skin depth) of the Earth's magneto-tail is remarkably consistent with the laboratory results. A more comprehensive study is proposed using MMS satellites very recently put into

  15. On the magnetic reconnection of resistive tearing mode with the dynamic flow effects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ali, A.; Li, Jiquan; Kishimoto, Y.

    2015-04-01

    Magnetic reconnection usually occurs in turbulent environments, which may not only provide anomalous resistivity to enhance reconnection rates but also significantly modify the reconnection process through direct nonlinear interaction with magnetic islands. This study presents numerical simulations investigating the effects of an imposed dynamic flow on magnetic reconnection, based on a two-dimensional reduced resistive MHD model. Results show that while the linear stability properties of the resistive tearing mode are moderately affected by the dynamic flow, nonlinear evolution is significantly modified by radial parity, amplitude, and frequency of the dynamic flow. After the slowly evolving nonlinear Rutherford stage, the reconnection process is found to progress in two phases by including the dynamic flow. A Sweet-Parker like current sheet is formed in the first phase. Afterwards, plasmoid instability is triggered in the second phase, where multiple plasmoids are continuously generated and ejected along the current sheet, leading to an impulsive bursty reconnection. The reconnection rate is considerably enhanced in the range of low resistivity as compared to without flow. We found that plasmoid instability onset and evolution are strongly influenced by the frequency and radial parity of the dynamic flows. The scaling of effective reconnection rates with the flow is found to be independent of resistivity.

  16. On the magnetic reconnection of resistive tearing mode with the dynamic flow effects

    SciTech Connect

    Ali, A.; Li, Jiquan Kishimoto, Y.

    2015-04-15

    Magnetic reconnection usually occurs in turbulent environments, which may not only provide anomalous resistivity to enhance reconnection rates but also significantly modify the reconnection process through direct nonlinear interaction with magnetic islands. This study presents numerical simulations investigating the effects of an imposed dynamic flow on magnetic reconnection, based on a two-dimensional reduced resistive MHD model. Results show that while the linear stability properties of the resistive tearing mode are moderately affected by the dynamic flow, nonlinear evolution is significantly modified by radial parity, amplitude, and frequency of the dynamic flow. After the slowly evolving nonlinear Rutherford stage, the reconnection process is found to progress in two phases by including the dynamic flow. A Sweet-Parker like current sheet is formed in the first phase. Afterwards, plasmoid instability is triggered in the second phase, where multiple plasmoids are continuously generated and ejected along the current sheet, leading to an impulsive bursty reconnection. The reconnection rate is considerably enhanced in the range of low resistivity as compared to without flow. We found that plasmoid instability onset and evolution are strongly influenced by the frequency and radial parity of the dynamic flows. The scaling of effective reconnection rates with the flow is found to be independent of resistivity.

  17. A 10-stage reconnection demonstration launcher

    SciTech Connect

    Cnare, E.C.; Widner, M.M.; Duggin, B.W.

    1989-01-01

    A small-scale, 10-stage cylindrical reconnection launcher has been designed, fabricated, and tested. Ten-gram projectiles are accelerated from rest to 317 m/s through the 0.44 m launcher assembly with a projectile kinetic energy to capacitor stored energy efficiency of 9%. Comparison of test results and computer code predictions will be presented. Results of these studies have substantiated launcher scaling at small size and have provided a useful test bed for launcher components and diagnostics. 5 refs., 6 figs.

  18. A 10-stage reconnection demonstration launcher

    SciTech Connect

    Cnare, E.G.; Widner, M.M.; Duggins, B.W. )

    1991-01-01

    This paper reports on a small-scale, 10-stage cylindrical reconnection launcher that has been designed, fabricated, and tested. Ten-gram projectiles are accelerated from rest to 317 m/s through the 0.44 m launcher assembly with a projectile kinetic energy to capacitor stored energy efficiency of 9%. Comparison of test results and computer code predictions are presented. Results of these studies have substantiated launcher scaling at small size and have provided a useful test bed for launcher components and diagnostics.

  19. The Complex Structure of Magnetic Field Discontinuities in the Turbulent Solar Wind

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greco, Antonella; Perri, Silvia; Servidio, Sergio; Veltri, Pierluigi

    2016-04-01

    Using high resolution Cluster satellite observations, we show that the turbulent solar wind is populated by magnetic discontinuities at different scales, going from proton down to electron scales, whose structure resembles the Harris equilibrium profile in plasmas. Using a multi-dimensional intermittency technique, we establish that these structures are connected through the scales. We show that observations are consistent with a scenario where many current layers develop in turbulence, and where the outflow of these reconnection events are characterized by complex sub-proton networks of secondary islands, in a self-similar way, confirming that ``reconnection in turbulence'' and ``turbulent reconnection'' coexist in space plasmas.

  20. Experimental Studies on the 3D Macro- and Microphysics of Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jara-Almonte, J.; Ji, H.; Yamada, M.; Yoo, J.; Fox, W. R., II

    2015-12-01

    Magnetic reconnection has been extensively studied in 2D geometries for many decades and considerable progress has been made in understating 2D reconnection physics, yet in real plasmas reconnection is fundamentally 3D in nature. Only recently has it become possible to study 3D reconnection using simulations, however some initial results have suggested that the inclusion of 3D effects does not strongly affect the basic properties of reconnection (e.g. reconnection rate or particle acceleration). Yet on the other hand, previous experiments, without direct 3D measurements, have implied that 3D effects could be important even in a quasi-2D system. Here we experimentally study both the (1) macro- and (2) microphysics of 3D reconnection in order to directly test the importance of 3D effects in a quasi-2D experiment. Using fully simultaneous 3D measurements, it is shown that during highly driven reconnection the macroscopic structure of the current sheet can become strongly 3D despite an essentially 2D upstream region. The correlation length along the current sheet is measured to be far shorter than suggested by kinetic simulations. Results from new experiments with stronger reconnection drive and diagnostics designed to estimate the 3D reconnection rate will be discussed. With regards to (2), the 3D microphysics, new diagnostics capable of measuring fluctuations at frequencies up to the electron cyclotron frequency (~ 300 MHz) have been developed and have identified the presence of very high frequency waves (~ 100 MHz) during asymmetric reconnection, localized to the low-density side. The detailed properties of these waves, including the measured power spectra and dispersion relation, will be discussed and compared with both previous satellite observations of high-frequency waves as well as with theoretical predictions on the generation of whistler waves during reconnection.