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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. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.].

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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).

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  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. 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.

  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 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

  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. 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

  7. 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.

  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. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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).

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  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. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  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. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Electron Acceleration by Cascading Reconnection in the Solar Corona. II. Resistive Electric Field Effects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-08-01

    We investigate electron acceleration by electric fields induced by cascading reconnections in current sheets trailing coronal mass ejections via a test particle approach in the framework of the guiding-center approximation. Although the resistive electric field is much weaker than the inductive electric field, the electron acceleration is still dominated by the former. Anomalous resistivity η is switched on only in regions where the current carrier’s drift velocity is large enough. As a consequence, electron acceleration is very sensitive to the spatial distribution of the resistive electric fields, and electrons accelerated in different segments of the current sheet have different characteristics. Due to the geometry of the 2.5-dimensional electromagnetic fields and strong resistive electric field accelerations, accelerated high-energy electrons can be trapped in the corona, precipitating into the chromosphere or escaping into interplanetary space. The trapped and precipitating electrons can reach a few MeV within 1 s and have a very hard energy distribution. Spatial structure of the acceleration sites may also introduce breaks in the electron energy distribution. Most of the interplanetary electrons reach hundreds of keV with a softer distribution. To compare with observations of solar flares and electrons in solar energetic particle events, we derive hard X-ray spectra produced by the trapped and precipitating electrons, fluxes of the precipitating and interplanetary electrons, and electron spatial distributions.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  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. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  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. 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).

  9. Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Video Gallery

    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...

  10. 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.

  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. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Electron jet of asymmetric reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khotyaintsev, Yu. V.; Graham, D. B.; Norgren, C.; Eriksson, E.; Li, W.; Johlander, A.; Vaivads, A.; André, M.; Pritchett, P. L.; Retinò, A.; Phan, T. D.; Ergun, R. E.; Goodrich, K.; Lindqvist, P.-A.; Marklund, G. T.; Le Contel, O.; Plaschke, F.; Magnes, W.; Strangeway, R. J.; Russell, C. T.; Vaith, H.; Argall, M. R.; Kletzing, C. A.; Nakamura, R.; Torbert, R. B.; Paterson, W. R.; Gershman, D. J.; Dorelli, J. C.; Avanov, L. A.; Lavraud, B.; Saito, Y.; Giles, B. L.; Pollock, C. J.; Turner, D. L.; Blake, J. D.; Fennell, J. F.; Jaynes, A.; Mauk, B. H.; Burch, J. L.

    2016-06-01

    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∥ amplitudes reaching up to 300 mV m-1 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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).

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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)

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  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

    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

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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} .

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Flat-plate film cooling from a double jet holes: influence of free-stream turbulence and flow acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khalatov, A. A.; Borisov, I. I.; Dashevsky, Yu. J.; Panchenko, N. A.; Kovalenko, A. S.

    2014-12-01

    Results of an experimental study of flat-plate film cooling effectiveness achieved with an inlet double jet scheme are reported. At low ( m = 0.5) and medium ( m = 1.0) blowing ratio the average film cooling effectiveness is about 20 % greater of the traditional two-row scheme of round holes data, while at higher m = 1.5 it is close to it. The free-stream turbulence (≈ 7 %) influences weekly on the average flat-plate film cooling effectiveness. The flow acceleration decreases the film cooling effectiveness down to 25 % when the pressure gradient parameter K is ranged from 0.5·10-6 to 3.5·10-6.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.; Pu, Z. -Y.; Yang, Z. -W.; Wang, J.; Taylor, M. G. G. T.; Berchem, J.; Constantinescu, D.; Volwerk, M.; Frey, H.; Fazakerley, A. N.; Shen, C.; Shi, J. -K.; Sibeck, D.; Escoubet, P.; Wild, J. A.

    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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. THEMIS Sees Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Video Gallery

    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...

  6. Earth Reconnect -- July 2012

    NASA Video Gallery

    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,...

  7. 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}.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  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 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  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. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Electron Energization and Structure of the Diffusion Region During Asymmetric Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chen, Li-Jen; Hesse, Michael; Wang, Shan; Bessho, Naoki; Daughton, William

    2016-01-01

    Results from particle-in-cell simulations of reconnection with asymmetric upstream conditions are reported to elucidate electron energization and structure of the electron diffusion region (EDR). Acceleration of unmagnetized electrons results in discrete structures in the distribution functions and supports the intense current and perpendicular heating in the EDR. The accelerated electrons are cyclotron turned by the reconnected magnetic field to produce the outflow jets, and as such, the acceleration by the reconnection electric field is limited, leading to resistivity without particle-particle or particle-wave collisions. A map of electron distributions is constructed, and its spatial evolution is compared with quantities previously proposed to be EDR identifiers to enable effective identifications of the EDR in terrestrial magnetopause reconnection.

  12. 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.

  13. Reconnections of Wave Vortex Lines

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berry, M. V.; Dennis, M. R.

    2012-01-01

    When wave vortices, that is nodal lines of a complex scalar wavefunction in space, approach transversely, their typical crossing and reconnection is a two-stage process incorporating two well-understood elementary events in which locally coplanar hyperbolas switch branches. The explicit description of this reconnection is a pedagogically useful…

  14. THEMIS Reconnection Animation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2006-01-01

    As the Sun's ionized and magnetized particles are passing by Earth they impart mechanical energy which is transformed into magnetic energy by compressing the tail. The tail field lines eventually merge (or 'reconnect') and slingshot particles towards and away from Earth, thereby converting magnetic into particle energy. This energy finds itself along field lines and powers the aurora on the one hand, and down the tail via the expulsion of a plasma blob, a plasmoid, on the other. This storage-and-release process of solar wind energy by the magnetosphere is called a substorm.

  15. Fast ion generation and runaway through magnetic reconnection events in MST

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Jungha; Anderson, Jay; Capecchi, William; Bonofiglo, Phillip; Sears, Stephanie

    2016-10-01

    Fokker-Planck and full orbit modeling are used to investigate how global reconnection events in MST plasmas generate an anisotropic fast ion distribution. A multi-step process is hypothesized. First, thermal ions are heated by a perpendicular heating mechanism, possibly a stochastic process that relies on turbulent diffusion and strong radial electric fields, or ion cyclotron damping in the tearing-driven turbulent cascade. Second, a small fraction of the heated ions have sufficient speed to develop substantial guiding center drifts that are relatively immune to stochastic magnetic transport. In the RFP, these fast ion drift orbits are favorable to confinement. Finally, these fast ions are accelerated by a parallel inductive electric field (up to 80 V/m) associated with the abruptly changing magnetic equilibrium. This strong impulsive field does not include any magnetic-fluctuation-based contribution as experienced by thermal particles or electrons, which do not run away like fast ions. CQL3D, a Fokker-Planck solver, and RIO, a full orbit tracing code, are used to model this multi-step process that is responsible for anisotropy in fast ion distribution in MST. Work supported by US DOE. Supported by US DOE.

  16. Energetic electrons associated with magnetic reconnection in the magnetic cloud boundary layer.

    PubMed

    Wang, Y; Wei, F S; Feng, X S; Zhang, S H; Zuo, P B; Sun, T R

    2010-11-05

    Here is reported in situ observation of energetic electrons (∼100-500 keV) associated with magnetic reconnection in the solar wind by the ACE and Wind spacecraft. The properties of this magnetic cloud driving reconnection and the associated energetic electron acceleration problem are discussed. Further analyses indicate that the electric field acceleration and Fermi-type mechanism are two fundamental elements in the electron acceleration processes and the trapping effect of the specific magnetic field configuration maintains the acceleration status that increases the totally gained energy.

  17. Multi-Spacecraft Turbulence Analysis Methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horbury, Tim S.; Osman, Kareem T.

    Turbulence is ubiquitous in space plasmas, from the solar wind to supernova remnants, and on scales from the electron gyroradius to interstellar separations. Turbulence is responsible for transporting energy across space and between scales and plays a key role in plasma heating, particle acceleration and thermalisation downstream of shocks. Just as with other plasma processes such as shocks or reconnection, turbulence results in complex, structured and time-varying behaviour which is hard to measure with a single spacecraft. However, turbulence is a particularly hard phenomenon to study because it is usually broadband in nature: it covers many scales simultaneously. One must therefore use techniques to extract information on multiple scales in order to quantify plasma turbulence and its effects. The Cluster orbit takes the spacecraft through turbulent regions with a range of characteristics: the solar wind, magnetosheath, cusp and magnetosphere. In each, the nature of the turbulence (strongly driven or fully evolved; dominated by kinetic effects or largely on fluid scales), as well as characteristics of the medium (thermalised or not; high or low plasma sub- or super-Alfvenic) mean that particular techniques are better suited to the analysis of Cluster data in different locations. In this chapter, we consider a range of methods and how they are best applied to these different regions. Perhaps the most studied turbulent space plasma environment is the solar wind, see Bruno and Carbone [2005]; Goldstein et al. [2005] for recent reviews. This is the case for a number of reasons: it is scientifically important for cosmic ray and solar energetic particle scattering and propagation, for example. However, perhaps the most significant motivations for studying solar wind turbulence are pragmatic: large volumes of high quality measurements are available; the stability of the solar wind on the scales of hours makes it possible to identify statistically stationary intervals to

  18. Three dimensional reconnection in astrophysical plasmas

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spicer, D. S.

    1990-01-01

    Theoretical issues related to three-dimensional reconnection and its application to the space and astrophysical environment are reviewed. Consideration is given to the meaning of reconnection in three dimensions, the way in which periodic and nonperiodic magnetic topologies alter the physics of reconnections, and the effects of chaotic magnetic fields on the reconnection process.

  19. Reconnection in photospheric-chromospheric current sheet and coronal heating

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, P.; Kumar, N.; Uddin, W.

    2011-02-15

    It has been observed by various ground and space based solar missions that magnetic reconnection occurs frequently in the photosphere-chromosphere region as well as in the solar corona. The purpose of this article is to examine the process of reconnection in thin current sheet formed between two oppositely directed magnetic flux tubes in photospheric-chromospheric region. Using the data of different atmospheric models for the solar photosphere and chromosphere, we have estimated the rate of magnetic reconnection in terms of Alfvenic Mach number, growth rate of tearing mode, island length scales, and energy dissipation rate necessary to heat the chromospheric plasma. It is found that magnetic Reynolds number for the current sheet in the chromosphere varies from 1.14 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 3} to 7.14 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 6} which indicates that the field lines in the photosphere and chromosphere reconnect with speed, that is, 0.00034 to 0.0297 times the Alfven speed. Frequency of the MHD waves generated in the chromosphere reconnection region is of the order of 100 Hz, so these high-frequency waves may be the sources of coronal heating and solar wind acceleration.

  20. The plasmoid instability and Hall effect during chromospheric magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murphy, Nicholas Arnold; Lukin, Vyacheslav

    2016-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a ubiquitous process in the partially ionized solar chromosphere. Recent two-dimensional simulations have shown that the plasmoid instability onsets during partially ionized reconnection [1-4]. We use the plasma-neutral module of the HiFi framework to simulate the nonlinear evolution of the plasmoid instability during symmetric and asymmetric reconnection. These simulations model the plasma and neutrals as separate fluids and include ionization, recombination, charge exchange, thermal conduction, and the Hall effect. The Hall effect leads to the development of significant out-of-plane magnetic fields in the current sheet region in the laminar phase, but we do not observe shortening of the current sheet or significant acceleration of the reconnection rate as a result. After the onset of the plasmoid instability, structure develops on scales comparable to the ion inertial length. We compare simulations of the plasmoid instability with and without the Hall effect to determine its impact on the reconnection process. Finally, we discuss ongoing efforts to connect these simulations with solar observations and laboratory experiments.[1] Leake et al. 2012, ApJ, 760, 109 [2] Leake et al. 2013, PhPl, 20, 062102 [3] Ni et al. 2015, ApJ, 799, 79 [4] Murphy & Lukin 2015, ApJ, 805, 134

  1. Dissipation in magnetic reconnection with a guide magnetic field

    SciTech Connect

    Hesse, Michael

    2006-12-15

    A combination of numerical simulation results and analytical theory is applied to the problem of magnetic reconnection in a guide magnetic field. An investigation of electron distribution functions within the electron diffusion region leads to a picture of mixing of particles with different acceleration histories on electron Larmor scales. Based on an apparent average loss of accelerated particles by field-aligned and ExB transport, it is proposed that the role of the reconnection electric field is to replenish this loss by acceleration of particles that enter the electron diffusion region. Analytic theory is employed to verify this model, and an equation is derived, which balances the average electric field force density by a diffusion term applied to the electron momentum density. The diffusion coefficient contains explicitly the electron Larmor spatial scale and a poloidal transport time scale.

  2. Magnetohydrodynamic Numerical Simulations of Magnetic Reconnection in Interstellar Medium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanuma, Syuniti

    2000-03-01

    reconnection, triggered by a supernova explosion, creates hot plasmas and magnetic islands (helical tubes), and how the magnetic islands confine the hot plasmas in Galaxy. The supernova shock is one of the possible mechanisms to trigger reconnection in Galaxy. We conclude that magnetic reconnection is able to heat the GRXE plasma if the magnetic field is localized in an intense flux tube with Blocal sim 30 muG. Part III This is the main part of the thesis. We examine the magnetic reconnection triggered by a supernova shock (or a point explosion) in interstellar medium, by performing 2D MHD numerical simulations with high spatial resolution. The magnetic reconnection starts long after the supernova shock (fast-mode MHD shock wave) passes a current sheet. The current sheet evolves as follows: (i) The tearing-mode instability is excited by the supernova shock. The current sheet becomes thin in the nonlinear phase of tearing instability. (ii) The current-sheet thinning is saturated when the current-sheet thickness becomes comparable to that of Sweet-Parker current sheet. After that, Sweet-Parker type reconnection starts, and the current-sheet length increases. (iii) The secondary tearing-mode instability occurs in the thin Sweet-Parker current sheet. (iv) As a result, further current-sheet thinning occurs, because gas density decreases in the current sheet. The anomalous resistivity sets in, and Petschek type reconnection starts. The interstellar gas is accelerated and heated. The magnetic energy is released quickly while magnetic islands are moving in the current sheet during Petschek type reconnection. (v) Magnetic reconnection stops because the gas pressure increases in the current sheet near left and right boundaries. The released magnetic energy is determined by the interstellar magnetic field strength, not by the energy of initial supernova nor distance between the supernova and the current sheet. We suggest that magnetic reconnection is a possible mechanism to generate X

  3. Intuitive approach to magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Kulsrud, Russell M.

    2011-11-15

    Two reconnection problems are considered. The first problem concerns global physics. The plasma in the global reconnection region is in magnetostatic equilibrium. It is shown that this equilibrium can be uniquely characterized by a set of constraints. During reconnection and independently of the local reconnection physics, these constraints can be uniquely evolved from any initial state. The second problem concerns Petschek reconnection. Petschek's model for fast reconnection, which is governed by resistive MHD equations with constant resistivity is not validated by numerical simulations. Malyshkin et al.[Phys. Plasmas 12, 102920 (2005)], showed that the reason for the discrepancy is that Petschek did not employ Ohm's law throughout the local diffusion region, but only at the X-point. A derivation of Petschek reconnection, including Ohm's law throughout the entire diffusion region, removes the discrepancy. This derivation is based largely on Petschek's original 1964 calculation [in AAS-NASA Symposium on Solar Flares (National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Washington, D.C., 1964), NASA SP50, p. 425]. A useful physical interpretation of the role which Ohm's law plays in the diffusion region is presented.

  4. Simulation study of magnetic reconnection in high magnetic Reynolds number plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakabo, T.; Kusano, K.; Miyoshi, T.; Vekstein, G.

    2013-12-01

    Magnetic reconnection is an important process for dynamics in space and laboratory plasmas. Magnetic reconnection is basically dominated by magnetic diffusion at thin current sheet as proposed by Sweet (1958) and Parker (1963). According to their theory, the reconnection rate must be inversely proportional to the square root of the magnetic Reynolds number (S). In magnetosphere and the solar corona, however, in spite of high magnetic Reynolds number (>10^12), reconnection rate is measured to be about 10^-2 that is much higher than the Sweet and Parker's prediction. Although Petschek proposed that the slow mode shock may accelerate reconnection, numerical simulations suggested that the Petschek's type reconnection cannot be sustained with uniform resistivity. On the other hand, it is pointed out that in high magnetic Reynolds number, the thin current sheet becomes unstable to the so-called secondary tearing instability, which generates many plasmoids and drives a sort of fast reconnection. Although Baty (2012) recently investigated the possibility of Petschek-like structure in relatively high-S (~10^4) regime, it is still unclear whether and how the magnetic reconnection is able to be accelerated in higher-S regime (S>10^5). In this paper, we developed the high-resolution magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) simulation of magnetic reconnection for very high-S (S~10^4-10^6) aiming at revealing the acceleration mechanism of magnetic reconnection. We applied the HLLD Riemann solver, which was developed by Miyoshi and Kusano (2005), to the high resolution two-dimensional MHD simulation of current sheet dynamics. In our model, the initial state is given by the Harris sheet equilibrium plus perturbation. As a result, in the case for S=10^5, multiple X-line reconnection appears as a result of the secondary tearing instability and magnetic reconnection is accelerated through the formation of multiple magnetic islands as pointed out by the previous studies. Furthermore, we found that

  5. Demonstrations that the Solar Wind Is Not Accelerated by Waves

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, Aaron

    2008-01-01

    The present work uses both observations and theoretical considerations to show that hydromagnetic waves 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 by both observations of coronal striations and theoretical considerations of line-tying to a nonturbulent photosphere, nonlocality of interactions, and the nature of the 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.

  6. Colour Reconnection in WW Events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Hondt, J.

    2003-07-01

    Preliminary results are presented for a measurement of the κ parameter used in the JETSET SK-I model of Colour Reconnection in {W}+{W}^- -> qbar {q}'bar {q}q^' events at LEP2. An update on the investigation of Colour Reconnection effects in hadronic decays of W pairs, using the particle flow in DELPHI is presented. A second method is based on the observation that two different mW estimators have different sensitivity to the parametrised Colour Reconnection effect. Hence the difference between them is an observable with information content about κ.

  7. Observational Signatures of Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Savage, Sabrina

    2014-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection is often referred to as the primary source of energy release during solar flares. 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. Therefore, predicting and studying observationally feasible signatures of the precursors and consequences of reconnection is necessary for guiding and verifying the simulations that dominate our understanding. I will present a set of such observations, particularly in connection with long-duration solar events, and compare them with recent simulations and theoretical predictions.

  8. "Smoking-Gun" Observables of Magnetic Reconnection: Spatiotemporal Evolution of Electron Characteristics Throughout the Diffusion Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shuster, Jason R.

    How does magnetic reconnection happen in a collisionless plasma? Knowledge of electron-scale dynamics is necessary to answer this outstanding question of plasma physics. Based on fully kinetic particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations of symmetric reconnection, the spatiotemporal evolution of velocity distribution functions in and around the electron diffusion region (EDR) elucidates how electrons are accelerated and heated by the cooperating reconnection electric and normal magnetic fields. The discrete, triangular structures characteristic of EDR distributions rotate and gyrotropize in velocity space as electrons remagnetize, forming multicomponent arc and ring structures. Further downstream, exhaust electrons are found to exhibit highly structured, time-dependent anisotropies that can be used to infer the temporal stage of reconnection. Cluster spacecraft measurements from a magnetotail reconnection exhaust region agree with these simulation predictions. In PIC simulations of asymmetric reconnection, EDR distributions acquire crescent-shaped populations, indicative of accelerated magnetosheath electrons mixing with electrons of magnetospheric origin. NASA's successfully launched Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission caught an EDR at the magnetopause and confirmed the signature crescent electron populations. A virtual spacecraft trajectory through the PIC domain is determined quantitatively by inputting MMS magnetic field measurements into an algorithm that outputs a trajectory along which the input measurements are matched. The crescent structures observed by MMS in the EDR are consistent with the simulation distributions at the corresponding time along the computed trajectory. This work demonstrates that electron characteristics can serve as "smoking-gun" observables of the EDR at the heart of the magnetic reconnection mystery.

  9. Energy exchanges in reconnection outflows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lapenta, Giovanni; Goldman, Martin V.; Newman, David L.; Markidis, Stefano

    2017-01-01

    Reconnection outflows are highly energetic directed flows that interact with the ambient plasma or with flows from other reconnection regions. Under these conditions the flow becomes highly unstable and chaotic, as any flow jets interacting with a medium. We report here massively parallel simulations of the two cases of interaction between outflow jets and between a single outflow with an ambient plasma. We find in both case the development of a chaotic magnetic field, subject to secondary reconnection events that further complicate the topology of the field lines. The focus of the present analysis is on the energy balance. We compute each energy channel (electromagnetic, bulk, thermal, for each species) and find where the most energy is exchanged and in what form. The main finding is that the largest energy exchange is not at the reconnection site proper but in the regions where the outflowing jets are destabilized.

  10. Geomagnetically Induced Currents From Reconnection

    NASA Video Gallery

    This animations shows a coronal mass ejections collide with Earth's magnetic fields and the fields change shape and strength. Reconnection in the magnetotail causes currents to follow the field lin...

  11. The role of turbulence in coronal heating and solar wind expansion.

    PubMed

    Cranmer, Steven R; Asgari-Targhi, Mahboubeh; Miralles, Mari Paz; Raymond, John C; Strachan, Leonard; Tian, Hui; Woolsey, Lauren N

    2015-05-13

    Plasma in the Sun's hot corona expands into the heliosphere as a supersonic and highly magnetized solar wind. This paper provides an overview of our current understanding of how the corona is heated and how the solar wind is accelerated. Recent models of magnetohydrodynamic turbulence have progressed to the point of successfully predicting many observed properties of this complex, multi-scale system. However, it is not clear whether the heating in open-field regions comes mainly from the dissipation of turbulent fluctuations that are launched from the solar surface, or whether the chaotic 'magnetic carpet' in the low corona energizes the system via magnetic reconnection. To help pin down the physics, we also review some key observational results from ultraviolet spectroscopy of the collisionless outer corona.

  12. The role of turbulence in coronal heating and solar wind expansion

    PubMed Central

    Cranmer, Steven R.; Asgari-Targhi, Mahboubeh; Miralles, Mari Paz; Raymond, John C.; Strachan, Leonard; Tian, Hui; Woolsey, Lauren N.

    2015-01-01

    Plasma in the Sun's hot corona expands into the heliosphere as a supersonic and highly magnetized solar wind. This paper provides an overview of our current understanding of how the corona is heated and how the solar wind is accelerated. Recent models of magnetohydrodynamic turbulence have progressed to the point of successfully predicting many observed properties of this complex, multi-scale system. However, it is not clear whether the heating in open-field regions comes mainly from the dissipation of turbulent fluctuations that are launched from the solar surface, or whether the chaotic ‘magnetic carpet’ in the low corona energizes the system via magnetic reconnection. To help pin down the physics, we also review some key observational results from ultraviolet spectroscopy of the collisionless outer corona. PMID:25848083

  13. Exploring Magnetopause Reconnection with MMS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burch, J. L.; Torbert, R. B.; Moore, T. E.; Pollock, C. J.; Mauk, B.; Fuselier, S. A.; Nakamura, R.; Hesse, M.; Ergun, R.; Giles, B. L.; Phan, T.; Baker, D. N.

    2015-12-01

    Magnetospheric Multiscale is a NASA Solar-Terrestrial Probes mission that is designed to conduct a definitive experiment on magnetic reconnection in the boundary regions of the Earth's magnetoshere. Previous missions have established that reconnection occurs somewhere on the magnetopause and in the geomagnetic tail on a nearly continuous basis. Most of the predictions that have been made about reconnection on the MHD and ion scales have been confirmed and new questions posed, particularly at smaller scales. MMS is designed to probe reconnection down to the smallest scales possible thereby allowing the assessment of electron-scale pressure gradients and inertial effects as possible important drivers of magnetic reconnection. Multipoint measurements of 3D electric and magnetic fields and plasma distributions at the required spatial resolution are required along with plasma waves, energetic particles and ion composition to open this new window on reconnection and solve its remaining mysteries. With a wide range of new and vastly improved measurements at 4 locations with separations down to 10 km, MMS is fully operational and nearing the dayside magnetopause where its exploration begins. In this paper results obtained from the first three months of magnetopause crossings will be presented.

  14. Properties of asymmetric magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Birn, J.; Borovsky, J. E.; Hesse, M.

    2008-03-15

    Properties of magnetic reconnection are investigated in two-dimensional, resistive magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) simulations of current sheets separating plasmas with different magnetic field strengths and densities. Specific emphasis is on the influence of the external parameters on the reconnection rate. The effect of the dissipation in the resistive MHD model is separated from this influence by evaluating resistivity dependence together with the dependence on the background parameters. Two scenarios are considered, which may be distinguished as driven and nondriven reconnection. In either scenario, the maximum reconnection rate (electric field) is found to depend on appropriate hybrid expressions based on a magnetic field strength and an Alfven speed derived from the characteristic values in the two inflow regions. The scaling compares favorably with an analytic formula derived recently by Cassak and Shay [Phys. Plasmas 14, 102114 (2007)] applied to the regime of fast reconnection. An investigation of the energy flow and conversion in the vicinity of the reconnection site revealed a significant role of enthalpy flux generation, in addition to the expected conversion of Poynting flux to kinetic energy flux. This enthalpy flux generation results from Ohmic heating as well as adiabatic, that is, compressional heating. The latter is found more important when the magnetic field strengths in the two inflow regions are comparable in magnitude.

  15. Windsock memory COnditioned RAM (CO-RAM) pressure effect: Forced reconnection in the Earth's magnetotail

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vörös, Z.; Facskó, G.; Khodachenko, M.; Honkonen, I.; Janhunen, P.; Palmroth, M.

    2014-08-01

    Magnetic reconnection (MR) is a key physical concept explaining the addition of magnetic flux to the magnetotail and closed flux lines back-motion to the dayside magnetosphere. This scenario elaborated by Dungey (1963) can explain many aspects of solar wind-magnetosphere interaction processes, including substorms. However, neither the Dungey model nor its numerous modifications were able to explain fully the onset conditions for MR in the tail. In this paper, we introduce new onset conditions for forced MR in the tail. We call our scenario the "windsock memory conditioned ram pressure effect." Our nonflux transfer-associated forcing is introduced by a combination of the large-scale windsock motions exhibiting memory effects and solar wind dynamic pressure actions on the nightside magnetopause during northward oriented interplanetary magnetic field (IMF). Using global MHD Grand Unified Magnetosphere Ionosphere Coupling Simulation version 4 simulation results, upstream data from Wind, magnetosheath data from Cluster 1 and distant tail data from the two-probe Acceleration, Reconnection, Turbulence and Electrodynamics of the Moon's Interaction with the Sun mission, we show that the simultaneous occurrence of vertical windsock motions of the magnetotail and enhanced solar wind dynamic pressure introduces strong nightside disturbances, including enhanced electric fields and persistent vertical cross-tail shear flows. These perturbations, associated with a stream interaction region in the solar wind, drive MR in the tail during episodes of northward oriented interplanetary magnetic field (IMF). We detect MR indirectly, observing plasmoids in the tail and ground-based signatures of earthward moving fast flows. We also consider the application to solar system planets and close-in exoplanets, where the proposed scenario can elucidate some new aspects of solar/stellar wind-magnetosphere interactions.

  16. Magnetic Reconnection Instabilities in Soft-Gamma Repeaters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heyl, Jeremy S.; Gill, Ramandeep

    2015-01-01

    We examine an external trigger mechanism that gives rise to the intense soft gamma-ray repeater (SGR) giant flares. Out of the three giant flares, two showcased the existence of a precursor, which we show to have had initiated the main flare. We develop a reconnection model based on the hypothesis that shearing motion of the footpoints causes the materialization of a Sweet-Parker current layer in the magnetosphere. The thinning of this oscopic layer due to the development of an embedded super-hot turbulent current layer switches on the impulsive Hall reconnection, which powers the giant flare. We show that the thinning time is on the order of the pre-flare quiescent time.

  17. Reconnection layer dynamics in the Reconnection Scaling Experiment at LANL

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furno, Ivo; Intrator, Thomas; Hemsing, Erik; Hsu, Scott; Lapenta, Giovanni; Ricci, Paolo

    2003-10-01

    Using the Reconnection Scaling Experiment (RSX) at Los Alamos National Laboratory, we are studying quasi-2D magnetic reconnection in a 3D linear geometry. RSX is a linear plasma device that relies on plasma gun technology to generate high density (>10^14 cm-3), high current (J 200A/cm^2) ohmically heated (Te 15eV) hydrogen plasma channels ( 2 cm radius). In RSX, magnetic reconnection is induced during the current ramp-up between two axially directed parallel current channels generating a reconnection magnetic field, B_rec, up to 40 Gauss. A set of 12 magnet coils induces an axial guide magnetic field Bz of up to 0.1 T allowing the reconnection field B_rec to be independently scaled from the guiding field B_z. Plasma collisionality can also be independently scaled by varying the plasma gun fill pressure. The formation and dynamics of the current sheet is studied using time and space resolved magnetic field measurements. To date, preliminary experiments in the collisional regime and in the presence of a strong guide magnetic field (B_z/B_rec>10) show the formation of a Sweet-Parker like Y-shaped current sheet. The axial electric field, as inferred from the measured magnetic flux annihilation rate, is also consistent with Sweet-Parker magnetic reconnection. In future experiments, more collisionless regimes will be explored, and the influence of the guide magnetic field on the dynamics of the current sheet and the reconnection rate will be investigated in truly 3D geometry.

  18. Blazar flares powered by plasmoids in relativistic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petropoulou, Maria; Giannios, Dimitrios; Sironi, Lorenzo

    2016-11-01

    Powerful flares from blazars with short (˜min) variability time-scales are challenging for current models of blazar emission. Here, we present a physically motivated ab initio model for blazar flares based on the results of recent particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations of relativistic magnetic reconnection. PIC simulations demonstrate that quasi-spherical plasmoids filled with high-energy particles and magnetic fields are a self-consistent by-product of the reconnection process. By coupling our PIC-based results (i.e. plasmoid growth, acceleration profile, particle and magnetic content) with a kinetic equation for the evolution of the electron distribution function we demonstrate that relativistic reconnection in blazar jets can produce powerful flares whose temporal and spectral properties are consistent with the observations. In particular, our model predicts correlated synchrotron and synchrotron self-Compton flares of duration of several hours-days powered by the largest and slowest moving plasmoids that form in the reconnection layer. Smaller and faster plasmoids produce flares of sub-hour duration with higher peak luminosities than those powered by the largest plasmoids. Yet, the observed fluence in both types of flares is similar. Multiple flares with a range of flux-doubling time-scales (minutes to several hours) observed over a longer period of flaring activity (days or longer) may be used as a probe of the reconnection layer's orientation and the jet's magnetization. Our model shows that blazar flares are naturally expected as a result of magnetic reconnection in a magnetically dominated jet.

  19. New observations of flux ropes in the magnetotail reconnection region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Shiyong; Retino, Alessandro; Phan, Tai; Daughton, W. Bill; Vaivads, Andris; Karimabadi, Homa; Pang, Ye; Zhou, Meng; Sahraoui, Fouad; Li, Guanlai; Yuan, Zhigang; Deng, Xiaohua; Fu, Huishan; Fu, Song; Wang, Dedong

    2016-04-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a fundamental physical process that enables the rapid transfer of magnetic energy into plasma kinetic and thermal energy in the laboratory, astrophysical and space plasma. Flux ropes have been suggested to play important role in controlling the micro-scale physics of magnetic reconnection and electron acceleration. In this presentation, we report new observations of flux ropes in the magnetotail reconnection region based on the Cluster multi-spacecraft data. Firstly, two consecutive magnetic flux ropes, separated by less than 30 s (Δt < 30 s), are observed within one magnetic reconnection diffusion region without strong guide field. In spite of the small but non-trivial global scale negative guide field (-By), there exists a directional change of the core fields of two flux ropes, i.e. -By for the first one, and +By for the second one. This is inconsistent with any theory and simulations. Therefore, we suggest that the core field of flux ropes is formed by compression of the local preexisting By, and that the directional change of core field is due to the change of local preexisting By. Such a change in ambientBy might be caused by some microscale physics. Secondary, we will present in-situ observations of a small scale flux rope locally formed at the separatrix region of magnetic reconnection without large guide field. Bidirectional electron beams (cold and hot beams) and density cavity accompanied by intense wave activities substantiate the crossing of the separatrix region. Density compression and one parallel electron beam are detected inside the flux rope. We suggest that this flux rope is locally generated at the separatrix region due to the tearing instability within the separatrix current layer. This observation sheds new light on the 3D picture of magnetic reconnection in space plasma.

  20. Definitions of Reconnection Revisited: Distinction Between Magnetic Reconnection and Plasma Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasyliunas, V. M.

    2015-12-01

    The term "magnetic reconnection" has been used with several different meanings, and sometimes (particularly in discussions of observations) it is not clear which one of them (if any) is meant. Most common is a more or less literal definition of "cutting" and "reconnecting" two magnetic field lines (often illustrated by a sketch of field lines in two dimensions, or a perspective drawing of isolated spaghetti-like flux tubes); this concept can be formulated more precisely in terms of plasma flow across (or, equivalently, electric field in) a bounding surface (separatrix) between topologically distinct magnetic fields. The so-called "generalized reconnection" invokes only deviations from ideal MHD in a localized region; a more precise formulation is by integrals of the electric field along magnetic field lines. These two definitions can be related to two different physical processes, which I call magnetic reconnection and plasma reconnection, respectively. Magnetic reconnection involves field lines that change from one topological class to another (e.g., between open and closed). Its occurrence, requiring the presence of singular magnetic null points, can be identified (at least in principle, conceptually) from the magnetic field alone. When representing magnetic reconnection graphically, it is important to show all the singular points explicitly and to keep in mind that field lines are a continuum: between any two field lines, there is always another field line (even arbitrarily close to the singular points). Plasma reconnection involves plasma flow in which plasma elements initially located on a single field line do not remain on a field line, and this may occur without any changes in the topology or other properties of the magnetic field. To understand either one, the process must be visualized always in three dimensions and without special symmetries. Prototype of magnetic reconnection is the well-known open-magnetosphere model of Dungey (1961). Prototype of

  1. The onset of ion heating during magnetic reconnection with a strong guide field

    SciTech Connect

    Drake, J. F.; Swisdak, M.

    2014-07-15

    The onset of the acceleration of ions during magnetic reconnection is explored via particle-in-cell simulations in the limit of a strong ambient guide field that self-consistently and simultaneously follow the motions of protons and α particles. Heating parallel to the local magnetic field during reconnection with a guide field is strongly reduced compared with the reconnection of anti-parallel magnetic fields. The dominant heating of thermal ions during guide field reconnection results from pickup behavior of ions during their entry into reconnection exhausts and dominantly produces heating perpendicular rather than parallel to the local magnetic field. Pickup behavior requires that the ion transit time across the exhaust boundary (with a transverse scale of the order of the ion sound Larmor radius) be short compared with the ion cyclotron period. This translates into a threshold in the strength of reconnecting magnetic field that favors the heating of ions with high mass-to-charge. A simulation with a broad initial current layer produces a reconnecting system in which the amplitude of the reconnecting magnetic field just upstream of the dissipation region increases with time as reconnection proceeds. The sharp onset of perpendicular heating when the pickup threshold is crossed is documented. A comparison of the time variation of the parallel and perpendicular ion heating with that predicted based on the strength of the reconnecting field establishes the scaling of ion heating with ambient parameters both below and above the pickup threshold. The relevance to observations of ion heating in the solar corona is discussed.

  2. The plasmoid instability during asymmetric inflow magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Murphy, Nicholas A.; Young, Aleida K.; Shen, Chengcai; Lin, Jun; Ni, Lei

    2013-06-15

    Theoretical studies of the plasmoid instability generally assume that the reconnecting magnetic fields are symmetric. We relax this assumption by performing two-dimensional resistive magnetohydrodynamic simulations of the plasmoid instability during asymmetric inflow magnetic reconnection. Magnetic asymmetry modifies the onset, scaling, and dynamics of this instability. Magnetic islands develop preferentially into the weak magnetic field upstream region. Outflow jets from individual X-points impact plasmoids obliquely rather than directly as in the symmetric case. Consequently, deposition of momentum by the outflow jets into the plasmoids is less efficient, the plasmoids develop net vorticity, and shear flow slows down secondary merging between islands. Secondary merging events have asymmetry along both the inflow and outflow directions. Downstream plasma is more turbulent in cases with magnetic asymmetry because islands are able to roll around each other after exiting the current sheet. As in the symmetric case, plasmoid formation facilitates faster reconnection for at least small and moderate magnetic asymmetries. However, when the upstream magnetic field strengths differ by a factor of 4, the reconnection rate plateaus at a lower value than expected from scaling the symmetric results. We perform a parameter study to investigate the onset of the plasmoid instability as a function of magnetic asymmetry and domain size. There exist domain sizes for which symmetric simulations are stable but asymmetric simulations are unstable, suggesting that moderate magnetic asymmetry is somewhat destabilizing. We discuss the implications for plasmoid and flux rope formation in solar eruptions, laboratory reconnection experiments, and space plasmas. The differences between symmetric and asymmetric simulations provide some hints regarding the nature of the three-dimensional plasmoid instability.

  3. Studying astrophysical particle acceleration with laser-driven plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fiuza, Frederico

    2016-10-01

    The acceleration of non-thermal particles in plasmas is critical for our understanding of explosive astrophysical phenomena, from solar flares to gamma ray bursts. Particle acceleration is thought to be mediated by collisionless shocks and magnetic reconnection. The microphysics underlying these processes and their ability to efficiently convert flow and magnetic energy into non-thermal particles, however, is not yet fully understood. By performing for the first time ab initio 3D particle-in-cell simulations of the interaction of both magnetized and unmagnetized laser-driven plasmas, it is now possible to identify the optimal parameters for the study of particle acceleration in the laboratory relevant to astrophysical scenarios. It is predicted for the Omega and NIF laser conditions that significant non-thermal acceleration can occur during magnetic reconnection of laser-driven magnetized plasmas. Electrons are accelerated by the electric field near the X-points and trapped in contracting magnetic islands. This leads to a power-law tail extending to nearly a hundred times the thermal energy of the plasma and that contains a large fraction of the magnetic energy. The study of unmagnetized interpenetrating plasmas also reveals the possibility of forming collisionless shocks mediated by the Weibel instability on NIF. Under such conditions, both electrons and ions can be energized by scattering out of the Weibel-mediated turbulence. This also leads to power-law spectra that can be detected experimentally. The resulting experimental requirements to probe the microphysics of plasma particle acceleration will be discussed, paving the way for the first experiments of these important processes in the laboratory. As a result of these simulations and theoretical analysis, there are new experiments being planned on the Omega, NIF, and LCLS laser facilities to test these theoretical predictions. This work was supported by the SLAC LDRD program and DOE Office of Science, Fusion

  4. Global Simulations of Magnetotail Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuznetsova, M. M.; Hesse, M.; Rastatter, L.; Toth, G.; Gombosi, T.

    2007-01-01

    There is a growing number of observational evidences of dynamic quasi-periodical magnetosphere response to continuously southward interplan etary magnetic field (IMF). However, traditional global MHD simulatio ns with magnetic reconnection supported by numerical dissipation and ad hoc anomalous resistivity driven by steady southward IMF often prod uce only quasi-steady configurations with almost stationary near-eart h neutral line. This discrepancy can be explained by the assumption that global MHD simulations significantly underestimate the reconnectio n rate in the magnetotail during substorm expansion phase. Indeed, co mparative studies of magnetic reconnection in small scale geometries demonstrated that traditional resistive MHD did not produce the fast r econnection rates observed in kinetic simulations. The major approxim ation of the traditional MHD approach is an isotropic fluid assumption) with zero off-diagonal pressure tensor components. The approximatio n, however, becomes invalid in the diffusion region around the reconn ection site where ions become unmagnetized and experience nongyrotropic behaviour. Deviation from gyrotropy in particle distribution functi on caused by kinetic effects manifests itself in nongyrotropic pressu re tensor with nonzero off-diagonal components. We use the global MHD code BATS-R-US and replace ad hoc parameters such as "critical curren t density" and "anomalous resistivity" with a physically motivated di ssipation model. The key element of the approach is to identify diffusion regions where the isotropic fluid MHD approximation is not applic able. We developed an algorithm that searches for locations of magnet otail reconnection sites. The algorithm takes advantage of block-based domain-decomposition technique employed by the BATS-R-US. Boundaries of the diffusion region around each reconnection site are estimated from the gyrotropic orbit threshold condition, where the ion gyroradius is equal to the distance to the

  5. Comparison of helium and heavy ion spectra in /sup 3/He-rich solar flares with model calculations based on stochastic Fermi acceleration in Alfven turbulence

    SciTech Connect

    Moebius, E.; Scholer, M.; Hovestadt, D.; Klecker, B.; Gloeckler, G.

    1982-08-01

    A systematic study of the He isotopes, O, and Fe in six /sup 3/He-rich solar flares during the 1977--1979 period using the dE/dx versus E Ultralow Energy Wide Angle Telescope (ULEWAT) of the Max-Planck-Institut/University of Maryland experiment on ISEE 1 and ISEE 3 revealed that the /sup 3/He spectrum is generally harder than that of /sup 4/He, and the O spectrum is harder than that of Fe in the energy range 0.4--4. MeV per nucleon. At higher energies the flux of the anomalous cosmic ray component exceeds the flux of /sup 4/He and O solar particles for 1977. The spectra as measured for /sup 3/He and /sup 4/He are basically in agreement with a stationary model based on stochastic Fermi acceleration in Alfven turbulence including the corresponding rigidity-dependent diffusive particle loss. The oxygen and iron spectra, however, differ from the ones predicted by the model: the variation of the Fe/O ratio is larger than predicted. It is suggested that the occasional observation of a maximum of the /sup 3/He spectrum is due to a short time injection of /sup 3/He and a long time injection of normal composition material. Subject headings: cosmic rays: general: particle acceleration: Sun: abundances: Sun:flares

  6. Origin of resistivity in reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Treumann, Rudolf A.

    2001-06-01

    Resistivity is believed to play an important role in reconnection leading to the distinction between resistive and collisionless reconnection. The former is treated in the Sweet-Parker model of long current sheets, and the Petschek model of a small resistive region. Both models in spite of their different dynamics attribute to the violation of the frozen-in condition in their diffusion regions due to the action of resistivity. In collisionless reconnection there is little consensus about the processes breaking the frozen-in condition. The question is whether anomalous processes generate sufficient resistivity or whether other processes free the particles from slavery by the magnetic field. In the present paper we review processes that may cause anomalous resistivity in collisionless current sheets. Our general conclusion is that in space plasma boundaries accessible to in situ spacecraft, wave levels have always been found to be high enough to explain the existence of large enough local diffusivity for igniting local reconnection. However, other processes might take place as well. Non-resistive reconnection can be caused by inertia or diamagnetism.

  7. Interplanetary magnetic field as a detector of turbulence in the inner heliosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khabarova, O.

    2013-12-01

    Analysis of the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) behavior at different scales may give a key for understanding of turbulence spatial evolution in the heliosphere. It has been known that the solar wind plasma becomes more and more turbulent with heliocentric distance. Recent multi-spacecraft investigations of the large-scale IMF [1] show unexpectedly fast lost of the regular sector structure of the solar wind in the inner heliosphere. In the ecliptic plane, it seems to be broken at 3-4 AU, much closer to the Sun than the Parker spiral gets perpendicular to the sunward direction. At the same time, the high-latitude solar wind remains more structured at the same heliocentric distances [2]. This fact may bear evidence of radial increase of turbulence and intermittency in the solar wind due to magnetic reconnection. The magnetic reconnection recurrently occurs at the large-scale heliospheric current sheet (HCS) as well as at smaller-scale current sheets during the solar wind expansion [3]. As a result, a significant part of the heliosphere is filled with secondary current sheets as well as with waves and accelerated particles in some vicinity of the HCS. Under averaging, it looks as a radial increase of turbulence, especially in low latitudes. It also can be considered as one of the main causes of the break of the expected IMF radial dependence law [1, 2]. Results of the consequent multi-spacecraft analysis of plasma and magnetic filed turbulence characteristics at different heliocentric distances and heliolatitudes will be discussed. 1. O. Khabarova, V. Obridko, Puzzles of the Interplanetary Magnetic Field in the Inner Heliosphere, 2012, Astrophysical Journal, 761, 2, 82, doi:10.1088/0004-637X/761/2/82, http://arxiv.org/pdf/1204.6672v2.pdf 2. O.V. Khabarova, The interplanetary magnetic field: radial and latitudinal dependences, Astronomy Reports, 2013, 57, 11, http://arxiv.org/ftp/arxiv/papers/1305/1305.1204.pdf 3. V. Zharkova, O. Khabarova, Particle Acceleration in

  8. Relating reconnection rate, exhaust structure and effective resistivity

    SciTech Connect

    Singh, Nagendra

    2014-03-15

    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 (θ{sub e}), the half width (w) of the CDR, the outflow velocity V{sub o}, and the effective resistivity (η{sub eff}), 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 E{sub rec} to the current density J{sub y} 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.

  9. The Impact of Geometrical Constraints on Collisionless Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hesse, Michael; Aunai, Nico; Kuznetsova, Masha; Frolov, Rebekah; Black, Carrrie

    2012-01-01

    One of the most often cited features associated with collisionless magnetic reconnection is a Hall-type magnetic field, which leads, in antiparallel geometries, to a quadrupolar magnetic field signature. The combination of this out of plane magnetic field with the reconnection in-plane magnetic field leads to angling of magnetic flux tubes out of the plane defined by the incoming magnetic flux. Because it is propagated by Whistler waves, the quadrupolar field can extend over large distances in relatively short amounts of time - in fact, it will extend to the boundary of any modeling domain. In reality, however, the surrounding plasma and magnetic field geometry, defined, for example, by the overall solar wind flow, will in practice limit the extend over which a flux tube can be angled out of the main plain. This poses the question to what extent geometric constraints limit or control the reconnection process and this is the question investigated in this presentation. The investigation will involve a comparison of calculations, where open boundary conditions are set up to mimic either free or constrained geometries. We will compare momentum transport, the geometry of the reconnection regions, and the acceleration if ions and electrons to provide the current sheet in the outflow jet.

  10. Magnetospheric Multiscale Satellites Observations of Parallel Electric Fields Associated with Magnetic Reconnection.

    PubMed

    Ergun, R E; Goodrich, K A; Wilder, F D; Holmes, J C; Stawarz, J E; Eriksson, S; Sturner, A P; Malaspina, D M; Usanova, M E; Torbert, R B; Lindqvist, P-A; Khotyaintsev, Y; Burch, J L; Strangeway, R J; Russell, C T; Pollock, C J; Giles, B L; Hesse, M; Chen, L J; Lapenta, G; Goldman, M V; Newman, D L; Schwartz, S J; Eastwood, J P; Phan, T D; Mozer, F S; Drake, J; Shay, M A; Cassak, P A; Nakamura, R; Marklund, G

    2016-06-10

    We report observations from the Magnetospheric Multiscale satellites of parallel electric fields (E_{∥}) associated with magnetic reconnection in the subsolar region of the Earth's magnetopause. E_{∥} events near the electron diffusion region have amplitudes on the order of 100  mV/m, which are significantly larger than those predicted for an antiparallel reconnection electric field. This Letter addresses specific types of E_{∥} events, which appear as large-amplitude, near unipolar spikes that are associated with tangled, reconnected magnetic fields. These E_{∥} events are primarily in or near a current layer near the separatrix and are interpreted to be double layers that may be responsible for secondary reconnection in tangled magnetic fields or flux ropes. These results are telling of the three-dimensional nature of magnetopause reconnection and indicate that magnetopause reconnection may be often patchy and/or drive turbulence along the separatrix that results in flux ropes and/or tangled magnetic fields.

  11. Localization and propagation of the energy release during 3D kinetic magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lapenta, Giovanni; Markidis, Stefano; Goldman, Marty; Newman, David

    2013-04-01

    Reconnection is a key processes where energy is released: magnetic field lines break, merge in a new configuration. In the process some of the energy is released. Recent work by Shay and collaborators has pointed out that energy is released far and moving fast away from the reconnection site, at a speed exceeding several times the Alfven speed. We revisit this point, considering the release of energy from reconnection and considering both laminar processes and turbulent reconnection. We analyse the energy budget and the processes of energy transfer via Poynting flux and particle flows. The results are compared with the recent findings by Shay. The effect of the guide field can be very significant at even relatively weak strength, as our recent analysis shows. The effect on the life cycle of energy is considered. The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Commission's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under the grant agreement SWIFF (project n° 263340, www.swiff.eu). [1] M. A. Shay, J. F. Drake, J. P. Eastwood, and T. D. Phan, Super-Alfvénic Propagation of Substorm Reconnection Signatures and Poynting Flux, Phys. Rev. Lett. 107, 089901, 2011. [2] M.V. Goldman, G. Lapenta, D. L. Newman, S. Markidis, H. Che, Jet Deflection by Very Weak Guide Fields during Magnetic Reconnection, Physical Review Letters, 107, 135001, 2011.

  12. Locating magnetic reconnection x-lines in 3D PIC simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olson, D. K.; Dorelli, J.; Daughton, W. S.; Karimabadi, H.

    2013-12-01

    In a three-dimensional PIC simulation of turbulent magnetic reconnection, a reconnection 'X-line' can be identified as a separator in the magnetic topology. From this x-line, it is possible to compute the reconnection rate by evaluating the line integral of the electric field along the separator. This technique is used in a reconnection simulation of a symmetric Harris sheet driven by inflow at the upstream boundaries with a strong guide field (such that the magnetic field is non-vanishing everywhere and there are no magnetic nulls). The results of this analysis are compared to the General Magnetic Reconnection theory (GMR) [Hesse and Schindler, 1998], showing that in this symmetric case GMR agrees with our topological approach to finding the location of the x-line. The parallel electric field is non-trivial along the entire length of the x-line, however, suggesting that the reconnection diffusion region cannot be identified by local measures of the breakdown of ideal MHD alone. We discuss the implications of these results for NASA's upcoming Magnetospheric Multiscale mission.

  13. Global Extended MHD Studies of Fast Magnetic Reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Breslau J.A.; Jardin, S.C.

    2002-09-18

    Recent experimental and theoretical results have led to two lines of thought regarding the physical processes underlying fast magnetic reconnection. One is based on the traditional Sweet-Parker model but replaces the Spitzer resistivity with an enhanced resistivity caused by electron scattering by ion acoustic turbulence. The other includes the finite gyroradius effects that enter Ohm's law through the Hall and electron pressure gradient terms. A 2-D numerical study, conducted with a new implicit parallel two-fluid code, has helped to clarify the similarities and differences in predictions between these two models and provides some insight into their respective ranges of validity.

  14. Plasma and Energetic Particle Behaviors During Asymmetric Magnetic Reconnection at the Magnetopause

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, S. H.; Zhang, H.; Zong, Q.-G.; Otto, A.; Sibeck, D. G.; Wang, Y.; Glassmeier, K.-H.; Daly, P.W.; Reme, H.

    2014-01-01

    The factors controlling asymmetric reconnection and the role of the cold plasma population in the reconnection process are two outstanding questions. We present a case study of multipoint Cluster observations demonstrating that the separatrix and flow boundary angles are greater on the magnetosheath than on the magnetospheric side of the magnetopause, probably due to the stronger density than magnetic field asymmetry at this boundary. The motion of cold plasmaspheric ions entering the reconnection region differs from that of warmer magnetosheath and magnetospheric ions. In contrast to the warmer ions, which are probably accelerated by reconnection in the diffusion region near the subsolar magnetopause, the colder ions are simply entrained by ??×?? drifts at high latitudes on the recently reconnected magnetic field lines. This indicates that plasmaspheric ions can sometimes play only a very limited role in asymmetric reconnection, in contrast to previous simulation studies. Three cold ion populations (probably H+, He+, and O+) appear in the energy spectrum, consistent with ion acceleration to a common velocity.

  15. Particle-in-cell simulations of electron energization in laser-driven magnetic reconnection

    DOE PAGES

    Lu, San; Lu, Quanming; Guo, Fan; ...

    2016-01-25

    Electrons can be energized during laser-driven magnetic reconnection, and the energized electrons form three super-Alfvénic electron jets in the outflow region (Lu et al 2014 New J. Phys. 16 083021). In this paper, by performing two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations, we find that the electrons can also be significantly energized before magnetic reconnection occurs. When two plasma bubbles with toroidal magnetic fields expand and squeeze each other, the electrons in the magnetic ribbons are energized through betatron acceleration due to the enhancement of the magnetic field, and an electron temperature anisotropymore » $${T}_{{\\rm{e}}\\perp }\\gt {T}_{{\\rm{e}}| | }$$ develops. Meanwhile, some electrons are trapped and bounced repeatedly between the two expanding/approaching bubbles and get energized through a Fermi-like process. Furthermore, the energization before magnetic reconnection is more significant (or important) than that during magnetic reconnection.« less

  16. Particle-in-cell simulations of electron energization in laser-driven magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, San; Lu, Quanming; Guo, Fan; Sheng, Zhengming; Wang, Huanyu; Wang, Shui

    2016-01-25

    Electrons can be energized during laser-driven magnetic reconnection, and the energized electrons form three super-Alfvénic electron jets in the outflow region (Lu et al 2014 New J. Phys. 16 083021). In this paper, by performing two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations, we find that the electrons can also be significantly energized before magnetic reconnection occurs. When two plasma bubbles with toroidal magnetic fields expand and squeeze each other, the electrons in the magnetic ribbons are energized through betatron acceleration due to the enhancement of the magnetic field, and an electron temperature anisotropy ${T}_{{\\rm{e}}\\perp }\\gt {T}_{{\\rm{e}}| | }$ develops. Meanwhile, some electrons are trapped and bounced repeatedly between the two expanding/approaching bubbles and get energized through a Fermi-like process. Furthermore, the energization before magnetic reconnection is more significant (or important) than that during magnetic reconnection.

  17. A reconnectable multiway implantable connector.

    PubMed

    Rushton, D N; Tromans, A M; Donaldson, N de N

    2002-12-01

    A well-tried plug-and-socket connector system designed for connecting multichannel implanted cables was adapted so as to allow disconnection and reconnection during surgery. Five different sealing techniques were tested in vitro, and it was found that only one of them had the required qualities of high leakage path impedance (taken as more than one megaohm for the worst sample) after three months of saline soak, together with demountability under surgical conditions. The system has subsequently been successfully implemented in a patient in whom reconnection was required two years after implantation.

  18. MAGNETIZATION OF CLOUD CORES AND ENVELOPES AND OTHER OBSERVATIONAL CONSEQUENCES OF RECONNECTION DIFFUSION

    SciTech Connect

    Lazarian, A.; Esquivel, A.; Crutcher, R.

    2012-10-01

    Recent observational results for magnetic fields in molecular clouds reviewed by Crutcher seem to be inconsistent with the predictions of the ambipolar diffusion theory of star formation. These include the measured decrease in mass to flux ratio between envelopes and cores, the failure to detect any self-gravitating magnetically subcritical clouds, the determination of the flat probability distribution function (PDF) of the total magnetic field strengths implying that there are many clouds with very weak magnetic fields, and the observed scaling B{proportional_to}{rho}{sup 2/3} that implies gravitational contraction with weak magnetic fields. We consider the problem of magnetic field evolution in turbulent molecular clouds and discuss the process of magnetic field diffusion mediated by magnetic reconnection. For this process that we termed 'reconnection diffusion', we provide a simple physical model and explain that this process is inevitable in view of the present-day understanding of MHD turbulence. We address the issue of the expected magnetization of cores and envelopes in the process of star formation and show that reconnection diffusion provides an efficient removal of magnetic flux that depends only on the properties of MHD turbulence in the core and the envelope. We show that as the amplitude of turbulence as well as the scale of turbulent motions decrease from the envelope to the core of the cloud, the diffusion of the magnetic field is faster in the envelope. As a result, the magnetic flux trapped during the collapse in the envelope is being released faster than the flux trapped in the core, resulting in much weaker fields in envelopes than in cores, as observed. We provide simple semi-analytical model calculations which support this conclusion and qualitatively agree with the observational results. Magnetic reconnection is also consistent with the lack of subcritical self-gravitating clouds, with the observed flat PDF of field strengths, and with the

  19. Magnetic Reconnection Onset and Energy Release at Current Sheets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeVore, C. R.; Antiochos, Spiro K.

    2015-04-01

    Reconnection and energy release at current sheets are important at the Sun (coronal heating, coronal mass ejections, flares, and jets) and at the Earth (magnetopause flux transfer events and magnetotail substorms) and other magnetized planets, and occur also at the interface between the Heliosphere and the interstellar medium, the heliopause. The consequences range from relatively quiescent heating of the ambient plasma to highly explosive releases of energy and accelerated particles. We use the Adaptively Refined Magnetohydrodynamics Solver (ARMS) model to investigate the self-consistent formation and reconnection of current sheets in an initially potential 2D magnetic field containing a magnetic null point. Unequal stresses applied to the four quadrants bounded by the X-line separatrix distort the potential null into a double-Y-type current sheet. We find that this distortion eventually leads to onset of fast magnetic reconnection across the sheet, with copious production, merging, and ejection of magnetic islands due to plasmoid instability. In the absence of a mechanism for ideal instability or loss of equilibrium of the global structure, however, this reconnection leads to minimal energy release. Essentially, the current sheet oscillates about its force-free equilibrium configuration. When the structure is susceptible to a large-scale rearrangement of the magnetic field, on the other hand, the energy release becomes explosive. We identify the conditions required for reconnection to transform rapidly a large fraction of the magnetic free energy into kinetic and other forms of plasma energy, and to restructure the current sheet and its surrounding magnetic field dramatically. We discuss the implications of our results for understanding heliophysical activity, particularly eruptions, flares, and jets in the corona.Our research was supported by NASA’s Heliophysics Supporting Research and Living With a Star Targeted Research and Technology programs.

  20. Fundamental Concepts Associated with Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonzalez, W. D.; Parker, E. N.; Mozer, F. S.; Vasyliūnas, V. M.; Pritchett, P. L.; Karimabadi, H.; Cassak, P. A.; Scudder, J. D.; Yamada, M.; Kulsrud, R. M.; Koga, D.

    The chapter starts with a discussion about the importance of the concept of magnetic field lines in space plasmas and magnetic reconnection, followed by presentations on: (a) the meaning and validity of empirical constructs related with magnetic reconnection research, such as: "moving" magnetic field lines, "frozen-in" condition and "diffusion region" of reconnection; and (b) experimental evidence of the diffusion region and related energetics. Next, aims to link external (MHD) with internal (non-MHD) regions of reconnection are discussed in association with the so-called "Axford conjecture", followed by short presentations on: (a) global equilibria in reconnection; and (b) the role of the separatrices in global aspects of reconnection. In the last section, we present additional discussion about the concept of "diffusion region" and about the two fundamental questions associated with magnetic reconnection reviewed in this chapter.

  1. Improved Magnetic Reconnection Experiment at FRC Device

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Ming; Zhou, Ruijie; Vasquez, Daniel; Huang, Tian-Sen; Prairie View Solar Observatory Team

    2014-10-01

    With experimental facility's improvement, magnetic reconnection has been further studied at Prairie View rotamak device. By adding one toroidal current in the central part of the rotamak device, the cutting of one magnetic field reverse configuration (FRC) as two FRCs in the experiment process becomes more obvious. Differing from the magnetic reconnection experiments conducted at other labs, where magnetic reconnection is formed with two ware-coiled currents buried in a chamber with large scale magnetic field, in our magnetic reconnection experiment the main source of the magnetic field is plasma current. Thus, the magnetic reconnection experiments conducted at rotamak device are closer to the one occurring in the space and on the sun. At the present stage, our experiments focus on the study of the change in electron temperature during the magnetic reconnection process. Furthermore, the ion temperature and plasma flow can be easily achieved from fast ion Doppler spectroscopy (IDS) diagnostic system, which makes the magnetic reconnection process more clearly.

  2. Relativistic jets shine through shocks or magnetic reconnection?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sironi, Lorenzo; Petropoulou, Maria; Giannios, Dimitrios

    2015-06-01

    Observations of gamma-ray-bursts and jets from active galactic nuclei reveal that the jet flow is characterized by a high radiative efficiency and that the dissipative mechanism must be a powerful accelerator of non-thermal particles. Shocks and magnetic reconnection have long been considered as possible candidates for powering the jet emission. Recent progress via fully-kinetic particle-in-cell simulations allows us to revisit this issue on firm physical grounds. We show that shock models are unlikely to account for the jet emission. In fact, when shocks are efficient at dissipating energy, they typically do not accelerate particles far beyond the thermal energy, and vice versa. In contrast, we show that magnetic reconnection can deposit more than 50 per cent of the dissipated energy into non-thermal leptons as long as the energy density of the magnetic field in the bulk flow is larger than the rest-mass energy density. The emitting region, i.e. the reconnection downstream, is characterized by a rough energy equipartition between magnetic fields and radiating particles, which naturally accounts for a commonly observed property of blazar jets.

  3. Colour Reconnection at LEP2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abreu, P.

    2002-03-01

    The preliminary results on the search of colour reconnection effects (CR) from the four experiments at LEP, Aleph, Delphi, L3 and Opal, are reviewed. Extreme models are excluded by studies of standard variables, and on going studies of a method first suggested by L3, the particle flow method1, are yet inconclusive.

  4. Reconnection in thin current sheets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tenerani, Anna; Velli, Marco; Pucci, Fulvia; Rappazzo, A. F.

    2016-05-01

    It has been widely believed that reconnection is the underlying mechanism of many explosive processes observed both in nature and laboratory, but the question of reconnection speed and initial trigger have remained mysterious. How is fast magnetic energy release triggered in high Lundquist (S) and Reynolds (R) number plasmas?It has been shown that a tearing mode instability can grow on an ideal timescale, i.e., independent from the the Lundquist number, once the current sheet thickness becomes thin enough, or rather the inverse aspect ratio a/L reaches a scale a/L~S-1/3. As such, the latter provides a natural, critical threshold for current sheets that can be formed in nature before they disrupt in a few Alfvén time units. Here we discuss the transition to fast reconnection extended to simple viscous and kinetic models and we propose a possible scenario for the transition to explosive reconnection in high-Lundquist number plasmas, that we support with fully nonlinear numerical MHD simulations of a collapsing current sheet.

  5. Observation and Modeling of a Termination Shock in a Solar Eruption as a Possible Particle Accelerator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gary, Dale E.; Chen, Bin; Bastian, Timothy S.; Shen, Chengcai; Krucker, Sam

    2015-04-01

    Solar eruptions and their associated solar flares are the most energetic particle accelerators in our solar system. Yet the acceleration mechanism remains uncertain. A possible candidate often invoked in the standard picture of solar eruptions is a termination shock, produced by fast reconnection outflows impinging upon dense, closed loops in a helmet-type geometry. However, the importance of termination shocks in solar particle acceleration remains controversial, mainly because there has been no direct detection of such shocks. Here we report direct imaging of the location and evolution of a termination shock during the rise phase of a solar eruption. The shock appears at radio wavelengths as a narrow surface sandwiched between multitudes of downward-moving plasma blobs and the underlying, newly-reconnected flaring loops, and evolves coherently with a loop-top hard X-ray source in the shock downstream region. The shock produces many short-lived, point-like radio sources, each interpreted as emission from a turbulence cell interacting with fast (nonthermal) electrons. These point-like radio sources clearly outline the termination shock front and their positions change in reaction to the arrival of the fast plasma blobs, which are well-reproduced by our numerical simulations based on a resistive magnetohydrodynamics reconnection model in a standard two-ribbon flare geometry. We further show that a temporary disruption of the shock coincides with a reduction of radio and hard X-ray emission associated with the energetic electron population. Our observations strongly favor a scenario in which the termination shock is responsible for accelerating electrons to high energies.

  6. The role of Alfvénic turbulence in the acceleration of the fast solar wind: "linkage" science with Solar Orbiter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dolla, Laurent; Rodriguez, Luciano; Zhukov, Andrei; Verdini, Andrea

    2016-07-01

    One of the key points of the Solar Orbiter mission will be the joint observations by remote sensing and in situ instruments: the remote sensing instruments will observe the sources of the solar wind that will later be measured in situ at the spacecraft (or at Solar Probe Plus). This is an opportunity to elucidate the role of MHD waves and turbulence in the acceleration of the fast solar wind. Using spectro-imagers (SPICE) or EUV imagers (EUI), various observables of the plasma can be measured remotely in coronal holes: electron temperature and density, element abundances, Doppler velocities and especially ion temperatures, non-thermal velocity and amplitude of MHD waves in solar features, the latter three being different manifestations of the MHD wave spectrum and its effects. We present some preliminary results on correlations of such remote sensing observables with in-situ measurement at 1 AU, as one may expect on the base of currently available observations (Hinode/EIS, SDO/AIA, and Wind).

  7. Development of High-Field ST Merging Experiment: TS-U for High Power Reconnection Heating

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ono, Y.; Koike, H.; Tanabe, H.; Himeno, S.; Ishida, S.; Kimura, K.; Kawanami, M.; Narita, M.; Takahata, Y.; Yokoyama, T.; Inomoto, M.; Cheng, C. Z.

    2016-10-01

    We are developing high-magnetic field ST merging/ reconnection experiment TS-U with Brec = 0.3-0.5T, based on our scaling law of reconnection heating energy proportional to square of the reconnecting (poloidal) magnetic field Brec. This scaling law indicates that the high-Brec ST merging will heat ions to the burning plasma regime without using any additional heating facility. Its mechanism is that the reconnection outflow accelerates mainly ions up to the poloidal Alfven speed like the Sweet-Parker model. The shock-like density pileups thermalize the accelerated ions in the down-streams in agreement with recent solar satellite observations and PIC simulation results. We already documented significant ion heating of spheromak and ST mergings up to 0.25keV in TS-3 and 1.2keV in MAST, leading us to the high-Brec merging experiment TS-U. It is noted that high-resolution (>500 channel) 2D measurements of ion and electron temperatures is being developed for the purpose of solving all acceleration and heating effects of magnetic reconnection, such as the huge outflow heating of ions in the downstream and electron heating localized at the X-point.

  8. Localized electron heating by strong guide-field magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Xuehan; Inomoto, Michiaki; Sugawara, Takumichi; Yamasaki, Kotaro; Ushiki, Tomohiko; Ono, Yasushi

    2015-10-01

    Localized electron heating of magnetic reconnection was studied under strong guide-field using two merging spherical tokamak plasmas in the University of Tokyo Spherical Tokamak experiment. Our new slide-type two-dimensional Thomson scattering system is documented for the first time the electron heating localized around the X-point. Shape of the high electron temperature area does not agree with that of energy dissipation term Et.jt . If we include a guide-field effect term Bt/(Bp+αBt) for Et.jt , the energy dissipation area becomes localized around the X-point, suggesting that the electrons are accelerated by the reconnection electric field parallel to the magnetic field and thermalized around the X-point.

  9. On phase diagrams of magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Cassak, P. A.; Drake, J. F.

    2013-06-15

    Recently, “phase diagrams” of magnetic reconnection were developed to graphically organize the present knowledge of what type, or phase, of reconnection is dominant in systems with given characteristic plasma parameters. Here, a number of considerations that require caution in using the diagrams are pointed out. First, two known properties of reconnection are omitted from the diagrams: the history dependence of reconnection and the absence of reconnection for small Lundquist number. Second, the phase diagrams mask a number of features. For one, the predicted transition to Hall reconnection should be thought of as an upper bound on the Lundquist number, and it may happen for considerably smaller values. Second, reconnection is never “slow,” it is always “fast” in the sense that the normalized reconnection rate is always at least 0.01. This has important implications for reconnection onset models. Finally, the definition of the relevant Lundquist number is nuanced and may differ greatly from the value based on characteristic scales. These considerations are important for applications of the phase diagrams. This is demonstrated by example for solar flares, where it is argued that it is unlikely that collisional reconnection can occur in the corona.

  10. Excitation of electrostatic waves in the electron cyclotron frequency range during magnetic reconnection in laboratory overdense plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Kuwahata, A.; Igami, H.; Kawamori, E.; Kogi, Y.; Inomoto, M.; Ono, Y.

    2014-10-15

    We report the observation of electromagnetic radiation at high harmonics of the electron cyclotron frequency that was considered to be converted from electrostatic waves called electron Bernstein waves (EBWs) during magnetic reconnection in laboratory overdense plasmas. The excitation of EBWs was attributed to the thermalization of electrons accelerated by the reconnection electric field around the X-point. The radiative process discussed here is an acceptable explanation for observed radio waves pulsation associated with major flares.

  11. MHD simulations of three-dimensional resistive reconnection in a cylindrical plasma column

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Striani, E.; Mignone, A.; Vaidya, B.; Bodo, G.; Ferrari, A.

    2016-11-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a plasma phenomenon where a topological rearrangement of magnetic field lines with opposite polarity results in dissipation of magnetic energy into heat, kinetic energy and particle acceleration. Such a phenomenon is considered as an efficient mechanism for energy release in laboratory and astrophysical plasmas. An important question is how to make the process fast enough to account for observed explosive energy releases. The classical model for steady state magnetic reconnection predicts reconnection times scaling as S1/2 (where S is the Lundquist number) and yields time-scales several order of magnitude larger than the observed ones. Earlier two-dimensional MHD simulations showed that for large Lundquist number the reconnection time becomes independent of S (`fast reconnection' regime) due to the presence of the secondary tearing instability that takes place for S ≳ 1 × 104. We report on our 3D MHD simulations of magnetic reconnection in a magnetically confined cylindrical plasma column under either a pressure balanced or a force-free equilibrium and compare the results with 2D simulations of a circular current sheet. We find that the 3D instabilities acting on these configurations result in a fragmentation of the initial current sheet in small filaments, leading to enhanced dissipation rate that becomes independent of the Lundquist number already at S ≃ 1 × 103.

  12. Measuring Properties of Magnetic Reconnection in Nonlinear Resistive and Two-Fluid Toroidal Simulations of Sawteeth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beidler, Matthew; Cassak, Paul; Jardin, Stephen; Ferraro, Nathaniel

    2015-11-01

    The sawtooth crash in tokamaks limits the core temperature, harms confinement, and seeds disruptions. A predictive capability of its ramifications has been elusive. Extended-MHD physics is needed to properly analyze the magnetic reconnection that occurs during the crash phase, but it has only recently been integrated into codes using a toroidal geometry. In this study, we employ the three-dimensional toroidal, extended-MHD code M3D-C1 to study reconnection during the sawtooth crash. We study the nonlinear evolution of a test equilibrium in a non-reduced field representation for resistive-MHD and the two-fluid model. We find that the toroidal mode growth rates for the two-fluid reconnection process exhibit a nonlinear acceleration and greatly exceed that of a similar resistive MHD model, more closely in line with experimental results. Furthermore, by sampling the two-fluid simulation data in the plane perpendicular to the helical (m,n) =(1,1) mode, we present the first observation of the quadrupole out-of-plane magnetic field appearing during sawtooth reconnection with the Hall term. We also explore how reconnection as viewed in the helically perpendicular plane varies toroidally, which affects the symmetry of the reconnection geometry and the local diamagnetic effects.

  13. Fast magnetic reconnection in low-density electron-positron plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Bessho, Naoki; Bhattacharjee, A.

    2010-10-15

    Two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations have been performed to study magnetic reconnection in low-density electron-positron plasmas without a guide magnetic field. Impulsive reconnection rates become of the order of unity when the background density is much smaller than 10% of the density in the initial current layer. It is demonstrated that the outflow speed is less than the upstream Alfven speed, and that the time derivative of the density must be taken into account in the definition of the reconnection rate. The reconnection electric fields in the low-density regime become much larger than the ones in the high-density regime, and it is possible to accelerate the particles to high energies more efficiently. The inertial term in the generalized Ohm's law is the most dominant term that supports a large reconnection electric field. An effective collisionless resistivity is produced and tracks the extension of the diffusion region in the late stage of the reconnection dynamics, and significant broadening of the diffusion region is observed. Because of the broadening of the diffusion region, no secondary islands, which have been considered to play a role to limit the diffusion region, are generated during the extension of the diffusion region in the outflow direction.

  14. Using Field-Particle Correlations to Diagnose the Collisionless Damping of Plasma Turbulence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Howes, Gregory; Klein, Kristropher

    2016-10-01

    Plasma turbulence occurs ubiquitously throughout the heliosphere, yet our understanding of how turbulence governs energy transport and plasma heating remains incomplete, constituting a grand challenge problem in heliophysics. In weakly collisional heliospheric plasmas, such as the solar corona and solar wind, damping of the turbulent fluctuations occurs due to collisionless interactions between the electromagnetic fields and the individual plasma particles. A particular challenge in diagnosing this energy transfer is that spacecraft measurements are typically limited to a single point in space. Here we present an innovative field-particle correlation technique that can be used with single-point measurements to estimate the energization of the plasma particles due to the damping of the electromagnetic fields, providing vital new information about this how energy transfer is distributed as a function of particle velocity. This technique has the promise to transform our ability to diagnose the kinetic plasma physical mechanisms responsible for not only the damping of turbulence, but also the energy conversion in both collisionless magnetic reconnection and particle acceleration. The work has been supported by NSF CAREER Award AGS-1054061, NSF AGS-1331355, and DOE DE-SC0014599.

  15. The Plasmaspheric Plume and Magnetopause Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Walsh, B. M.; Phan, T. D.; Sibeck, D. G.; Souza, V. M.

    2014-01-01

    We present near-simultaneous measurements from two THEMIS spacecraft at the dayside magnetopause with a 1.5 h separation in local time. One spacecraft observes a high-density plasmaspheric plume while the other does not. Both spacecraft observe signatures of magnetic reconnection, providing a test for the changes to reconnection in local time along the magnetopause as well as the impact of high densities on the reconnection process. When the plume is present and the magnetospheric density exceeds that in the magnetosheath, the reconnection jet velocity decreases, the density within the jet increases, and the location of the faster jet is primarily on field lines with magnetosheath orientation. Slower jet velocities indicate that reconnection is occurring less efficiently. In the localized region where the plume contacts the magnetopause, the high-density plume may impede the solar wind-magnetosphere coupling by mass loading the reconnection site.

  16. Relativistic Magnetic Reconnection in Kerr Spacetime.

    PubMed

    Asenjo, Felipe A; Comisso, Luca

    2017-02-03

    The magnetic reconnection process is analyzed for relativistic magnetohydrodynamical plasmas around rotating black holes. A simple generalization of the Sweet-Parker model is used as a first approximation to the problem. The reconnection rate, as well as other important properties of the reconnection layer, has been calculated taking into account the effect of spacetime curvature. Azimuthal and radial current sheet configurations in the equatorial plane of the black hole have been studied, and the case of small black hole rotation rate has been analyzed. For the azimuthal configuration, it is found that the black hole rotation decreases the reconnection rate. On the other hand, in the radial configuration, it is the gravitational force created by the black hole mass that decreases the reconnection rate. These results establish a fundamental interaction between gravity and magnetic reconnection in astrophysical contexts.

  17. Indeterminacy and instability in Petschek reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Forbes, Terry G.; Priest, Eric R.; Seaton, Daniel B.; Litvinenko, Yuri E.

    2013-05-15

    We explain two puzzling aspects of Petschek's model for fast reconnection. One is its failure to occur in plasma simulations with uniform resistivity. The other is its inability to provide anything more than an upper limit for the reconnection rate. We have found that previously published analytical solutions based on Petschek's model are structurally unstable if the electrical resistivity is uniform. The structural instability is associated with the presence of an essential singularity at the X-line that is unphysical. By requiring that such a singularity does not exist, we obtain a formula that predicts a specific rate of reconnection. For uniform resistivity, reconnection can only occur at the slow, Sweet-Parker rate. For nonuniform resistivity, reconnection can occur at a much faster rate provided that the resistivity profile is not too flat near the X-line. If this condition is satisfied, then the scale length of the nonuniformity determines the reconnection rate.

  18. Relativistic Magnetic Reconnection in Kerr Spacetime

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Asenjo, Felipe A.; Comisso, Luca

    2017-02-01

    The magnetic reconnection process is analyzed for relativistic magnetohydrodynamical plasmas around rotating black holes. A simple generalization of the Sweet-Parker model is used as a first approximation to the problem. The reconnection rate, as well as other important properties of the reconnection layer, has been calculated taking into account the effect of spacetime curvature. Azimuthal and radial current sheet configurations in the equatorial plane of the black hole have been studied, and the case of small black hole rotation rate has been analyzed. For the azimuthal configuration, it is found that the black hole rotation decreases the reconnection rate. On the other hand, in the radial configuration, it is the gravitational force created by the black hole mass that decreases the reconnection rate. These results establish a fundamental interaction between gravity and magnetic reconnection in astrophysical contexts.

  19. Study of energy conversion and partitioning in the magnetic reconnection layer of a laboratory plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Yamada, Masaaki; Yoo, Jongsoo; Jara-Almonte, Jonathan; Daughton, William; Ji, Hantao; Kulsrud, Russell M.; Myers, Clayton E.

    2015-05-15

    The most important feature of magnetic reconnection is that it energizes plasma particles by converting magnetic energy to particle energy, the exact mechanisms by which this happens are yet to be determined despite a long history of reconnection research. Recently, we have reported our results on the energy conversion and partitioning in a laboratory reconnection layer in a short communication [Yamada et al., Nat. Commun. 5, 4474 (2014)]. The present paper is a detailed elaboration of this report together with an additional dataset with different boundary sizes. Our experimental study of the reconnection layer is carried out in the two-fluid physics regime where ions and electrons move quite differently. We have observed that the conversion of magnetic energy occurs across a region significantly larger than the narrow electron diffusion region. A saddle shaped electrostatic potential profile exists in the reconnection plane, and ions are accelerated by the resulting electric field at the separatrices. These accelerated ions are then thermalized by re-magnetization in the downstream region. A quantitative inventory of the converted energy is presented in a reconnection layer with a well-defined, variable boundary. We also carried out a systematic study of the effects of boundary conditions on the energy inventory. This study concludes that about 50% of the inflowing magnetic energy is converted to particle energy, 2/3 of which is ultimately transferred to ions and 1/3 to electrons. When assisted by another set of magnetic reconnection experiment data and numerical simulations with different sizes of monitoring box, it is also observed that the observed features of energy conversion and partitioning do not depend on the size of monitoring boundary across the range of sizes tested from 1.5 to 4 ion skin depths.

  20. Study of energy conversion and partitioning in the magnetic reconnection layer of a laboratory plasma

    DOE PAGES

    Yamada, Masaaki; Yoo, Jongsoo; Jara-Almonte, Jonathan; ...

    2015-05-15

    The most important feature of magnetic reconnection is that it energizes plasma particles by converting magnetic energy to particle energy, the exact mechanisms by which this happens are yet to be determined despite a long history of reconnection research. Recently, we have reported our results on the energy conversion and partitioning in a laboratory reconnection layer in a short communication [Yamada et al., Nat. Commun. 5, 4474 (2014)]. The present paper is a detailed elaboration of this report together with an additional dataset with different boundary sizes. Our experimental study of the reconnection layer is carried out in the two-fluidmore » physics regime where ions and electrons move quite differently. We have observed that the conversion of magnetic energy occurs across a region significantly larger than the narrow electron diffusion region. A saddle shaped electrostatic potential profile exists in the reconnection plane, and ions are accelerated by the resulting electric field at the separatrices. These accelerated ions are then thermalized by re-magnetization in the downstream region. A quantitative inventory of the converted energy is presented in a reconnection layer with a well-defined, variable boundary. We also carried out a systematic study of the effects of boundary conditions on the energy inventory. This study concludes that about 50% of the inflowing magnetic energy is converted to particle energy, 2/3 of which is ultimately transferred to ions and 1/3 to electrons. When assisted by another set of magnetic reconnection experiment data and numerical simulations with different sizes of monitoring box, it is also observed that the observed features of energy conversion and partitioning do not depend on the size of monitoring boundary across the range of sizes tested from 1.5 to 4 ion skin depths.« less

  1. Comment on "Tail reconnection triggering substorm onset".

    PubMed

    Lui, A T Y

    2009-06-12

    Angelopoulos et al. (Research Articles, 15 August 2008, p. 931) reported that magnetic reconnection in Earth's magnetotail triggered the onset of a magnetospheric substorm. We provide evidence that (i) near-Earth current disruption, occurring before the conventional tail reconnection signatures, triggered the onset; (ii) the observed auroral intensification and tail reconnection are not causally linked; and (iii) the onset they identified is a continuation of earlier substorm activities.

  2. Magnetic reconnection in a compressible MHD plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Hesse, Michael; Zenitani, Seiji; Birn, Joachim

    2011-04-15

    Using steady-state resistive MHD, magnetic reconnection is reinvestigated for conditions of high resistivity/low magnetic Reynolds number, when the thickness of the diffusion region is no longer small compared to its length. Implicit expressions for the reconnection rate and other reconnection parameters are derived based on the requirements of mass, momentum, and energy conservation. These expressions are solved via simple iterative procedures. Implications specifically for low Reynolds number/high resistivity are being discussed.

  3. Magnetic Reconnection in a Compressible MHD Plasma

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hesse, Michael; Birn, Joachim; Zenitani, Seiji

    2011-01-01

    Using steady-state resistive MHD, magnetic reconnection is reinvestigated for conditions of high resistivity/low magnetic Reynolds number, when the thickness of the diffusion region is no longer small compared to its length. Implicit expressions for the reconnection rate and other reconnection parameters are derived based on the requirements of mass, momentum, and energy conservation. These expressions are solved via simple iterative procedures. Implications specifically for low Reynolds number/high resistivity are being discussed

  4. Collisionless Reconnection and Electron Demagnetization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scudder, J. D.

    Observable, dimensionless properties of the electron diffusion region of collisionless magnetic reconnection are motivated and benchmarked in two and three dimensional Particle In Cell (PIC) simulations as appropriate for measurements with present state of the art spacecraft. The dimensionless quantities of this paper invariably trace their origin to breaking the magnetization of the thermal electrons. Several observable proxies are also motivated for the rate of frozen flux violation and a parameter \\varLambda _{\\varPhi } that when greater than unity is associated with close proximity to the analogue of the saddle point region of 2D reconnection usually called the electron diffusion region. Analogous regions to the electron diffusion region of 2D reconnection with \\varLambda _{\\varPhi } > 1 have been identified in 3D simulations. 10-20 disjoint diffusion regions are identified and the geometrical patterns of their locations illustrated. First examples of associations between local observables based on electron demagnetization and global diagnostics (like squashing) are also presented. A by product of these studies is the development of a single spacecraft determinations of gradient scales in the plasma.

  5. IRIS Si iv LINE PROFILES: AN INDICATION FOR THE PLASMOID INSTABILITY DURING SMALL-SCALE MAGNETIC RECONNECTION ON THE SUN

    SciTech Connect

    Innes, D. E.; Guo, L.-J.; Huang, Y.-M.; Bhattacharjee, A.

    2015-11-10

    Our understanding of the process of fast reconnection has undergone a dramatic change in the last 10 years driven, in part, by the availability of high-resolution numerical simulations that have consistently demonstrated the break-up of current sheets into magnetic islands, with reconnection rates that become independent of Lundquist number, challenging the belief that fast magnetic reconnection in flares proceeds via the Petschek mechanism which invokes pairs of slow-mode shocks connected to a compact diffusion region. The reconnection sites are too small to be resolved with images, but these reconnection mechanisms, Petschek and the plasmoid instability, have reconnection sites with very different density and velocity structures and so can be distinguished by high-resolution line-profile observations. Using IRIS spectroscopic observations we obtain a survey of typical line profiles produced by small-scale events thought to be reconnection sites on the Sun. Slit-jaw images are used to investigate the plasma heating and re-configuration at the sites. A sample of 15 events from 2 active regions is presented. The line profiles are complex with bright cores and broad wings extending to over 300 km s{sup −1}. The profiles can be reproduced with the multiple magnetic islands and acceleration sites that characterize the plasmoid instability but not by bi-directional jets that characterize the Petschek mechanism. This result suggests that if these small-scale events are reconnection sites, then fast reconnection proceeds via the plasmoid instability, rather than the Petschek mechanism during small-scale reconnection on the Sun.

  6. IRIS Si IV Line Profiles: An Indication for the Plasmoid Instability during Small-scale Magnetic Reconnection on the Sun

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Innes, D. E.; Guo, L.-J.; Huang, Y.-M.; Bhattacharjee, A.

    2015-11-01

    Our understanding of the process of fast reconnection has undergone a dramatic change in the last 10 years driven, in part, by the availability of high-resolution numerical simulations that have consistently demonstrated the break-up of current sheets into magnetic islands, with reconnection rates that become independent of Lundquist number, challenging the belief that fast magnetic reconnection in flares proceeds via the Petschek mechanism which invokes pairs of slow-mode shocks connected to a compact diffusion region. The reconnection sites are too small to be resolved with images, but these reconnection mechanisms, Petschek and the plasmoid instability, have reconnection sites with very different density and velocity structures and so can be distinguished by high-resolution line-profile observations. Using IRIS spectroscopic observations we obtain a survey of typical line profiles produced by small-scale events thought to be reconnection sites on the Sun. Slit-jaw images are used to investigate the plasma heating and re-configuration at the sites. A sample of 15 events from 2 active regions is presented. The line profiles are complex with bright cores and broad wings extending to over 300 km s-1. The profiles can be reproduced with the multiple magnetic islands and acceleration sites that characterize the plasmoid instability but not by bi-directional jets that characterize the Petschek mechanism. This result suggests that if these small-scale events are reconnection sites, then fast reconnection proceeds via the plasmoid instability, rather than the Petschek mechanism during small-scale reconnection on the Sun.

  7. Local properties of magnetic reconnection in nonlinear resistive- and extended-magnetohydrodynamic toroidal simulations of the sawtooth crash

    DOE PAGES

    Beidler, M. T.; Cassak, P. A.; Jardin, S. C.; ...

    2016-12-15

    We diagnose local properties of magnetic reconnection during a sawtooth crash employing the three-dimensional toroidal, extended-magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) code M3D-C1. To do so, we sample simulation data in the plane in which reconnection occurs, the plane perpendicular to the helical (m, n) = (1, 1) mode at the q = 1 surface, where m and n are the poloidal and toroidal mode numbers and q is the safety factor. We study the nonlinear evolution of a particular test equilibrium in a non-reduced field representation using both resistive-MHD and extended-MHD models. We find growth rates for the extended-MHD reconnection process exhibit amore » nonlinear acceleration and greatly exceed that of the resistive-MHD model, as is expected from previous experimental, theoretical, and computational work. We compare the properties of reconnection in the two simulations, revealing the reconnecting current sheets are locally different in the two models and we present the first observation of the quadrupole out-of-plane Hall magnetic field that appears during extended-MHD reconnection in a 3D toroidal simulation (but not in resistive-MHD). We also explore the dependence on toroidal angle of the properties of reconnection as viewed in the plane perpendicular to the helical magnetic field, finding qualitative and quantitative effects due to changes in the symmetry of the reconnection process. Furthermore, this study is potentially important for a wide range of magnetically confined fusion applications, from confirming simulations with extended-MHD effects are sufficiently resolved to describe reconnection, to quantifying local reconnection rates for purposes of understanding and predicting transport, not only at the q = 1 rational surface for sawteeth, but also at higher order rational surfaces that play a role in disruptions and edge-confinement degradation.« less

  8. Local properties of magnetic reconnection in nonlinear resistive- and extended-magnetohydrodynamic toroidal simulations of the sawtooth crash

    SciTech Connect

    Beidler, M. T.; Cassak, P. A.; Jardin, S. C.; Ferraro, N. M.

    2016-12-15

    We diagnose local properties of magnetic reconnection during a sawtooth crash employing the three-dimensional toroidal, extended-magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) code M3D-C1. To do so, we sample simulation data in the plane in which reconnection occurs, the plane perpendicular to the helical (m, n) = (1, 1) mode at the q = 1 surface, where m and n are the poloidal and toroidal mode numbers and q is the safety factor. We study the nonlinear evolution of a particular test equilibrium in a non-reduced field representation using both resistive-MHD and extended-MHD models. We find growth rates for the extended-MHD reconnection process exhibit a nonlinear acceleration and greatly exceed that of the resistive-MHD model, as is expected from previous experimental, theoretical, and computational work. We compare the properties of reconnection in the two simulations, revealing the reconnecting current sheets are locally different in the two models and we present the first observation of the quadrupole out-of-plane Hall magnetic field that appears during extended-MHD reconnection in a 3D toroidal simulation (but not in resistive-MHD). We also explore the dependence on toroidal angle of the properties of reconnection as viewed in the plane perpendicular to the helical magnetic field, finding qualitative and quantitative effects due to changes in the symmetry of the reconnection process. Furthermore, this study is potentially important for a wide range of magnetically confined fusion applications, from confirming simulations with extended-MHD effects are sufficiently resolved to describe reconnection, to quantifying local reconnection rates for purposes of understanding and predicting transport, not only at the q = 1 rational surface for sawteeth, but also at higher order rational surfaces that play a role in disruptions and edge-confinement degradation.

  9. Local properties of magnetic reconnection in nonlinear resistive- and extended-magnetohydrodynamic toroidal simulations of the sawtooth crash

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beidler, M. T.; Cassak, P. A.; Jardin, S. C.; Ferraro, N. M.

    2017-02-01

    We diagnose local properties of magnetic reconnection during a sawtooth crash employing the three-dimensional toroidal, extended-magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) code M3D-C1. To do so, we sample simulation data in the plane in which reconnection occurs, the plane perpendicular to the helical (m,n)=(1,1) mode at the q = 1 surface, where m and n are the poloidal and toroidal mode numbers and q is the safety factor. We study the nonlinear evolution of a particular test equilibrium in a non-reduced field representation using both resistive-MHD and extended-MHD models. We find growth rates for the extended-MHD reconnection process exhibit a nonlinear acceleration and greatly exceed that of the resistive-MHD model, as is expected from previous experimental, theoretical, and computational work. We compare the properties of reconnection in the two simulations, revealing the reconnecting current sheets are locally different in the two models and we present the first observation of the quadrupole out-of-plane Hall magnetic field that appears during extended-MHD reconnection in a 3D toroidal simulation (but not in resistive-MHD). We also explore the dependence on toroidal angle of the properties of reconnection as viewed in the plane perpendicular to the helical magnetic field, finding qualitative and quantitative effects due to changes in the symmetry of the reconnection process. This study is potentially important for a wide range of magnetically confined fusion applications, from confirming simulations with extended-MHD effects are sufficiently resolved to describe reconnection, to quantifying local reconnection rates for purposes of understanding and predicting transport, not only at the q = 1 rational surface for sawteeth, but also at higher order rational surfaces that play a role in disruptions and edge-confinement degradation.

  10. Dissipation in Relativistic Pair-Plasma Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hesse, Michael; Zenitani, Seiji

    2007-01-01

    We present an investigation of the relativistic dissipation in magnetic reconnection. The investigated system consists of an electron-positron plasma. A relativistic generalization of Ohm's law is derived. We analyze a set of numerical simulations, composed of runs with and without guide magnetic field, and of runs with different species temperatures. The calculations indicate that the thermal inertia-based dissipation process survives in relativistic plasmas. For anti-parallel reconnection, it is found that the pressure tensor divergence remains the sole contributor to the reconnection electric field, whereas relativistic guide field reconnection exhibits a similarly important role of the bulk inertia terms.

  11. Dissipation in relativistic pair-plasma reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Hesse, Michael; Zenitani, Seiji

    2007-11-15

    An investigation into the relativistic dissipation in magnetic reconnection is presented. The investigated system consists of an electron-positron plasma. A relativistic generalization of Ohm's law is derived. A set of numerical simulations is analyzed, composed of runs with and without guide magnetic field, and of runs with different species temperatures. The calculations indicate that the thermal inertia-based dissipation process survives in relativistic plasmas. For antiparallel reconnection, it is found that the pressure tensor divergence remains the sole contributor to the reconnection electric field, whereas relativistic guide field reconnection exhibits a similarly important role of the bulk inertia terms.

  12. Physical mechanism of spontaneous fast reconnection evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ugai, M.

    2001-06-01

    Large dissipative events, such as solar flares and geomagnetic substorms, result from sudden onset of magnetic reconnection, so that it is a long-standing problem to find the physical mechanism that makes magnetic reconnection explosive. As recognized by Petschek, standing slow shocks enable the effective magnetic energy conversion in space plasmas of extremely large magnetic Reynolds number. Hence, a basic question is how the fast reconnection mechanism involving slow shocks can be realized as an eventual solution? We have proposed the spontaneous fast reconnection model, which describes a new type of nonlinear instability that grows by the positive feedback between plasma microphysics (current-driven anomalous resistivity) and macrophysics (global reconnection flow). It is demonstrated that the fast reconnection mechanism explosively grows by the positive feedback in a variety of physical situations; for the larger threshold of anomalous resistivity, the fast reconnection evolves more drastically. Also, distinct plasma processes, such as large-scale plasmoid and magnetic loop dynamics, result directly from the fast reconnection evolution. Even in general asymmetric situations, the spontaneous fast reconnection model effectively works, giving rise to drastic magnetic flux transfer.

  13. Unsteady magnetic reconnection in laboratory experiments with current sheets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frank, Anna

    2009-11-01

    According to present notion, unsteady magnetic reconnection in current sheets (CS) is basic to dramatic natural phenomena: solar and stellar flares, substorms in the Earth and other planetary magnetospheres, as well as to disruptive instabilities in tokamak plasmas. We present a review of laboratory experiments studying evolution of CS formed in 3D and 2D magnetic configurations with an X line, in the CS-3D device. Usually CS exists during an extended period in a metastable stage, without essential changes of its structure and parameters. Under certain conditions this stage may be suddenly interrupted by unsteady phase of magnetic reconnection, which manifests itself in a rapid change of the magnetic field topology, current redistribution, excitation of pulsed electric fields, and other dynamic effects. The unsteady phase results in effective conversion of magnetic energy into the energy of plasma and accelerated particles, and may finally bring about the CS disruption. In the context of the solar flares, a metastable CS is associated with a pre-flare situation, while CS disruption -- with the flare itself. The physical mechanisms triggering the unsteady magnetic reconnection in the laboratory produced current sheets are discussed. Supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (project # 09-02-00971).

  14. Magnetopause-Foreshock Interactions Induced by Dayside Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pfau-Kempf, Y.; Hietala, H.; Hoilijoki, S.; Palmroth, M.; Ganse, U.; Sandroos, A.; Hannuksela, O.; von Alfthan, S.; Vainio, R. O.

    2015-12-01

    We investigate the effects of dayside reconnection events on the bow shock in global hybrid-Vlasov simulations of the terrestrial magnetosphere. Using the Finnish Meteorological Institute's hybrid-Vlasov model Vlasiator (http://vlasiator.fmi.fi), which couples kinetic ions through Vlasov's equation with charge-neutralizing fluid electrons, the solar wind-magnetosphere interaction is modeled self-consistently in two spatial and three velocity dimensions. Recent polar plane simulations with southward IMF cover both the dayside and nightside reconnection sites, in a volume ranging from about 40 Earth radii (RE) upstream in the solar wind to about one hundred RE tailward.Dayside reconnection at the magnetopause results in the formation of the two-dimensional equivalents of flux transfer events. These magnetic islands are accelerated and move from the subsolar region towards the cusps and beyond. In doing so, they generate fast-mode waves which propagate throughout the magnetosheath and can lead to significant perturbations in the bow shock shape and position. We investigate such simulated events and their signatures in the magnetosheath, at the bow shock and in the foreshock. We also analyze observational data to find similar signatures in spacecraft measurements.

  15. Magnetopause-foreshock interactions induced by dayside reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pfau-Kempf, Yann; Hietala, Heli; Hoilijoki, Sanni; Palmroth, Minna; Ganse, Urs; Sandroos, Arto; Hannuksela, Otto; von Alfthan, Sebastian; Vainio, Rami

    2016-04-01

    We investigate the effects of dayside reconnection events on the bow shock in global hybrid-Vlasov simulations of the terrestrial magnetosphere. Using the Finnish Meteorological Institute's hybrid-Vlasov model Vlasiator (http://vlasiator.fmi.fi), which couples kinetic ions through Vlasov's equation with charge-neutralising fluid electrons, the solar wind-magnetosphere interaction is modelled self-consistently in two spatial and three velocity dimensions. Recent polar plane simulations with southward IMF cover both the dayside and nightside reconnection sites, in a volume ranging from about 40 Earth radii (RE) upstream to about one hundred RE downstream. Dayside reconnection at the magnetopause results in the formation of the two-dimensional equivalents of flux transfer events. These magnetic islands are accelerated and move from the subsolar region towards the cusps and beyond. In doing so, they generate fast-mode waves ahead and behind, which propagate throughout the magnetosheath and can lead to significant perturbations in the bow shock shape and position. We investigate such simulated events and their signatures in the magnetosheath, at the bow shock and in the foreshock. We also analyse observational data to find similar signatures in spacecraft measurements and discuss the requirements for THOR instruments if they were to be able to fully characterise such an event.

  16. Turbulence in laboratory and natural plasmas: Connecting the dots

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jenko, Frank

    2015-11-01

    It is widely recognized that turbulence is an important and fascinating frontier topic of both basic and applied plasma physics. Numerous aspects of this paradigmatic example of self-organization in nonlinear systems far from thermodynamic equilibrium remain to be better understood. Meanwhile, for both laboratory and natural plasmas, an impressive combination of new experimental and observational data, new theoretical concepts, and new computational capabilities (on the brink of the exascale era) have become available. Thus, it seems fair to say that we are currently facing a golden age of plasma turbulence research, characterized by fundamental new insights regarding the role and nature of turbulent processes in phenomena like cross-field transport, particle acceleration and propagation, plasma heating, magnetic reconnection, or dynamo action. At the same time, there starts to emerge a more unified view of this key topic of basic plasma physics, putting it into the much broader context of complex systems research and connecting it, e.g., to condensed matter physics and biophysics. I will describe recent advances and future challenges in this vibrant area of plasma physics, highlighting novel insights into the redistribution and dissipation of energy in turbulent plasmas at kinetic scales, using gyrokinetic, hybrid, and fully kinetic approaches in a complementary fashion. In this context, I will discuss, among other things, the influence of damped eigenmodes, the importance of nonlocal interactions, the origin and nature of non-universal power law spectra, as well as the role of coherent structures. Moreover, I will outline exciting new research opportunities on the horizon, combining extreme scale simulations with basic plasma and fusion experiments as well as with observations from satellites.

  17. Intermittency of magnetic field turbulence: Astrophysical applications of in-situ observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zelenyi, Lev M.; Bykov, Andrei M.; Uvarov, Yury A.; Artemyev, Anton V.

    2015-08-01

    We briefly review some aspects of magnetic turbulence intermittency observed in space plasmas. Deviation of statistical characteristics of a system (e.g. its high statistical momenta) from the Gaussian can manifest itself as domination of rare large intensity peaks often associated with the intermittency in the system's dynamics. Thirty years ago, Zeldovich stressed the importance of the non-Gaussian appearance of the sharp values of vector and scalar physical parameters in random media as a factor of magnetic field amplification in cosmic structures. Magnetic turbulence is governing the behavior of collisionless plasmas in space and especially the physics of shocks and magnetic reconnections. Clear evidence of intermittent magnetic turbulence was found in recent in-situ spacecraft measurements of magnetic fields in the near-Earth and interplanetary plasma environments. We discuss the potentially promising approaches of incorporating the knowledge gained from spacecraft in-situ measurements into modern models describing plasma dynamics and radiation in various astrophysical systems. As an example, we discuss supernova remnants (SNRs) which are known to be the sources of energy, momentum, chemical elements, and high-energy cosmic rays (CRs) in galaxies. Supernova shocks accelerate charged particles to very high energies and may strongly amplify turbulent magnetic fields via instabilities driven by CRs. Relativistic electrons accelerated in SNRs radiate polarized synchrotron emission in a broad range of frequencies spanning from the radio to gamma-rays. We discuss the effects of intermittency of magnetic turbulence on the images of polarized synchrotron X-ray emission of young SNRs and emission spectra of pulsar wind nebula.

  18. Beaming of Particles and Synchrotron Radiation in Relativistic Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kagan, Daniel; Nakar, Ehud; Piran, Tsvi

    2016-08-01

    Relativistic reconnection has been invoked as a mechanism for particle acceleration in numerous astrophysical systems. According to idealized analytical models, reconnection produces a bulk relativistic outflow emerging from the reconnection sites (X-points). The resulting radiation is therefore highly beamed. Using two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations, we investigate particle and radiation beaming, finding a very different picture. Instead of having a relativistic average bulk motion with an isotropic electron velocity distribution in its rest frame, we find that the bulk motion of the particles in X-points is similar to their Lorentz factor γ, and the particles are beamed within ˜ 5/γ . On the way from the X-point to the magnetic islands, particles turn in the magnetic field, forming a fan confined to the current sheet. Once they reach the islands they isotropize after completing a full Larmor gyration and their radiation is no longer strongly beamed. The radiation pattern at a given frequency depends on where the corresponding emitting electrons radiate their energy. Lower-energy particles that cool slowly spend most of their time in the islands and their radiation is not highly beamed. Only particles that quickly cool at the edge of the X-points generate a highly beamed fan-like radiation pattern. The radiation emerging from these fast cooling particles is above the burn-off limit (˜100 MeV in the overall rest frame of the reconnecting plasma). This has significant implications for models of gamma-ray bursts and active galactic nuclei that invoke beaming in that frame at much lower energies.

  19. Ponderomotive Acceleration in Coronal Loops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dahlburg, R. B.; Laming, J. M.; Taylor, B. D.; Obenschain, K.

    2016-11-01

    Ponderomotive acceleration has been asserted to be a cause of the first ionization potential (FIP) effect, the well-known enhancement in abundance by a factor of 3-4 over photospheric values of elements in the solar corona with FIP less than about 10 eV. It is shown here by means of numerical simulations that ponderomotive acceleration occurs in solar coronal loops, with the appropriate magnitude and direction, as a “by-product” of coronal heating. The numerical simulations are performed with the HYPERION code, which solves the fully compressible three-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic equations including nonlinear thermal conduction and optically thin radiation. Numerical simulations of coronal loops with an axial magnetic field from 0.005 to 0.02 T and lengths from 25,000 to 75,000 km are presented. In the simulations the footpoints of the axial loop magnetic field are convected by random, large-scale motions. There is a continuous formation and dissipation of field-aligned current sheets, which act to heat the loop. As a consequence of coronal magnetic reconnection, small-scale, high-speed jets form. The familiar vortex quadrupoles form at reconnection sites. Between the magnetic footpoints and the corona the reconnection flow merges with the boundary flow. It is in this region that the ponderomotive acceleration occurs. Mirroring the character of the coronal reconnection, the ponderomotive acceleration is also found to be intermittent.

  20. Development of bifurcated current sheets in solar wind reconnection exhausts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mistry, R.; Eastwood, J. P.; Phan, T. D.; Hietala, H.

    2015-12-01

    Petschek-type reconnection is expected to result in bifurcations of reconnection current sheets. In contrast, Hall reconnection simulations show smooth changes in the reconnecting magnetic field. Here we study three solar wind reconnection events where different spacecraft sample oppositely directed reconnection exhausts from a common reconnection site. The spacecraft's relative separations and measurements of the exhaust width are used to geometrically calculate each spacecraft's distance from the X line. We find that in all cases spacecraft farthest from the X line observe clearly bifurcated reconnection current sheets, while spacecraft nearer to the X line do not. These observations suggest that clear bifurcations of reconnection current sheets occur at large distances from the X line (~1000 ion skin depths) and that Petschek-type signatures are less developed close to the reconnection site. This may imply that fully developed bifurcations of reconnection current sheets are unlikely to be observed in the near-Earth magnetotail.

  1. A mechanism to produce a dawn-dusk component of plasma flow during magnetic reconnection in the magnetotail

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hawkins, J. G.; Lee, L. C.; Yan, M.; Lin, Y.; Perkins, F. W.; Yamada, M.

    1994-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection between antiparallel field lines in the magnetotail is generally thought to produce plasma acceleration in the earthward-tailward direction. However, measurements of the plasma velocity in the magnetotail during substorm activity sometimes reveal a dawn-dusk component of plasma flow. In this paper, we show that a dawn-dusk component of plasma acceleration may be produced during reconnection if the neutral line is not perpendicular to the magnetic field. In this case, Magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) simulations show that reconnection between antiparallel field lines will initially produce plasma acceleration that is nearly parallel to the neutral line because the magnetic tension force is not opposed by a pressure gradient force in this direction. As the magnetic field topology evolves to a steady state, the plasma flow direction rotates until it is nearly parallel to the plane that initially contained the antiparallel magnetic field lines before reconnection (hereafter referred to as the initial field plane). However, the time required to reach a steady state (typically several hundred seconds in the magnetotail region) may be greater than the time during which the reconnection process is active. Consequently, bursts of plasma flow with a dawn-dusk component may occur in the magnetotail. The initial acceleration along the neutral line depends on the angle theta (sub B) between the neutral line and the initial field plane, with the largest burst of plasma flow along the neutral line occuring when theta (s ub B) = 45 degs.

  2. Observed Aspects of Reconnection in Solar Eruptions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Ronald L.; Sterling, Alphonse C.; Gary, G. Allen; Cirtain, Jonathan W.; Falconer, David A.

    2011-10-01

    The observed magnetic field configuration and signatures of reconnection in the large solar magnetic eruptions that make major flares and coronal mass ejections and in the much smaller magnetic eruptions that make X-ray jets are illustrated with cartoons and representative observed eruptions. The main reconnection signatures considered are the imaged bright emission from the heated plasma on reconnected field lines. In any of these eruptions, large or small, the magnetic field that drives the eruption and/or that drives the buildup to the eruption is initially a closed bipolar arcade. From the form and configuration of the magnetic field in and around the driving arcade and from the development of the reconnection signatures in coordination with the eruption, we infer that (1) at the onset of reconnection the reconnection current sheet is small compared to the driving arcade, and (2) the current sheet can grow to the size of the driving arcade only after reconnection starts and the unleashed erupting field dynamically forces the current sheet to grow much larger, building it up faster than the reconnection can tear it down. We conjecture that the fundamental reason the quasi-static pre-eruption field is prohibited from having a large current sheet is that the magnetic pressure is much greater than the plasma pressure in the chromosphere and low corona in eruptive solar magnetic fields.

  3. Magnetic reconnection from a multiscale instability cascade

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moser, Auna L.; Bellan, Paul M.

    2012-02-01

    Magnetic reconnection, the process whereby magnetic field lines break and then reconnect to form a different topology, underlies critical dynamics of magnetically confined plasmas in both nature and the laboratory. Magnetic reconnection involves localized diffusion of the magnetic field across plasma, yet observed reconnection rates are typically much higher than can be accounted for using classical electrical resistivity. It is generally proposed that the field diffusion underlying fast reconnection results instead from some combination of non-magnetohydrodynamic processes that become important on the `microscopic' scale of the ion Larmor radius or the ion skin depth. A recent laboratory experiment demonstrated a transition from slow to fast magnetic reconnection when a current channel narrowed to a microscopic scale, but did not address how a macroscopic magnetohydrodynamic system accesses the microscale. Recent theoretical models and numerical simulations suggest that a macroscopic, two-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic current sheet might do this through a sequence of repetitive tearing and thinning into two-dimensional magnetized plasma structures having successively finer scales. Here we report observations demonstrating a cascade of instabilities from a distinct, macroscopic-scale magnetohydrodynamic instability to a distinct, microscopic-scale (ion skin depth) instability associated with fast magnetic reconnection. These observations resolve the full three-dimensional dynamics and give insight into the frequently impulsive nature of reconnection in space and laboratory plasmas.

  4. Frontiers for Laboratory Research of Magnetic Reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Ji, Hantao; Guo, Fan

    2015-07-16

    Magnetic reconnection occcurs throughout heliophysical and astrophysical plasmas as well as in laboratory fusion plasmas. Two broad categories of reconnection models exist: collisional MHD and collisionless kinetic. Eight major questions with respect to magnetic connection are set down, and past and future devices for studying them in the laboratory are described. Results of some computerized simulations are compared with experiments.

  5. Understanding the dynamics and energetics of magnetic reconnection in a laboratory plasma: Review of recent progress on selected fronts

    DOE PAGES

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

    2016-05-11

    Here, magnetic reconnection is a fundamental process at work in laboratory, space, and astrophysical plasmas, in which magnetic field lines change their topology and convert magnetic energy to plasma particles by acceleration and heating. One of the most important problems in reconnection research has been to understand why reconnection occurs so much faster than predicted by magnetohydrodynamics theory. Following the recent pedagogical review of this subject [Yamada et al., Rev. Mod. Phys. 82, 603 (2010)], this paper presents a review of more recent discoveries and findings in the research of fast magnetic reconnection in laboratory, space, and astrophysical plasmas. Inmore » spite of the huge difference in physical scales, we find remarkable commonality between the characteristics of the magnetic reconnection in laboratory and space plasmas. In this paper, we will focus especially on the energy flow, a key feature of the reconnection process. In particular, the experimental results on the energy conversion and partitioning in a laboratory reconnection layer [Yamada et al., Nat. Commun. 5, 4474 (2014)] are discussed and compared with quantitative estimates based on two-fluid analysis. In the Magnetic ReconnectionExperiment, we find that energy deposition to electrons is localized near the X-point and is mostly from the electric field component perpendicular to the magnetic field. The mechanisms of ion acceleration and heating are also identified, and a systematic and quantitative study on the inventory of converted energy within a reconnection layer with a well-defined but variable boundary. The measured energy partition in a reconnection region of similar effective size (L ≈ 3 ion skin depths) of the Earth's magneto-tail [Eastwood et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 225001 (2013)] is notably consistent with our laboratory results. Finally, to study the global aspects of magnetic reconnection, we have carried out a laboratory experiment on the stability criteria for

  6. Understanding the dynamics and energetics of magnetic reconnection in a laboratory plasma: Review of recent progress on selected fronts

    SciTech Connect

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

    2016-05-11

    Here, magnetic reconnection is a fundamental process at work in laboratory, space, and astrophysical plasmas, in which magnetic field lines change their topology and convert magnetic energy to plasma particles by acceleration and heating. One of the most important problems in reconnection research has been to understand why reconnection occurs so much faster than predicted by magnetohydrodynamics theory. Following the recent pedagogical review of this subject [Yamada et al., Rev. Mod. Phys. 82, 603 (2010)], this paper presents a review of more recent discoveries and findings in the research of fast magnetic reconnection in laboratory, space, and astrophysical plasmas. In spite of the huge difference in physical scales, we find remarkable commonality between the characteristics of the magnetic reconnection in laboratory and space plasmas. In this paper, we will focus especially on the energy flow, a key feature of the reconnection process. In particular, the experimental results on the energy conversion and partitioning in a laboratory reconnection layer [Yamada et al., Nat. Commun. 5, 4474 (2014)] are discussed and compared with quantitative estimates based on two-fluid analysis. In the Magnetic ReconnectionExperiment, we find that energy deposition to electrons is localized near the X-point and is mostly from the electric field component perpendicular to the magnetic field. The mechanisms of ion acceleration and heating are also identified, and a systematic and quantitative study on the inventory of converted energy within a reconnection layer with a well-defined but variable boundary. The measured energy partition in a reconnection region of similar effective size (L ≈ 3 ion skin depths) of the Earth's magneto-tail [Eastwood et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 225001 (2013)] is notably consistent with our laboratory results. Finally, to study the global aspects of magnetic reconnection, we have carried out a laboratory experiment on the stability criteria for solar

  7. Scaling of asymmetric reconnection in compressible plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Birn, J.; Borovsky, J. E.; Hesse, M.

    2010-05-15

    The scaling of the reconnection rate with external parameters is reconsidered for antiparallel reconnection in a single-fluid magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) model, allowing for compressibility as well as asymmetry between the plasmas and magnetic fields in the two inflow regions. The results show a modest dependence of the reconnection rate on the plasma beta (ratio of plasma to magnetic pressure) in the inflow regions and demonstrate the importance of the conversion of magnetic energy to enthalpy flux (that is, convected thermal energy) in the outflow regions. The conversion of incoming magnetic to outgoing thermal energy flux remains finite even in the limit of incompressibility, while the scaling of the reconnection rate obtained earlier [P. A. Cassak and M. A. Shay, Phys. Plasmas 14, 102114 (2007)] is recovered. The assumptions entering the scaling estimates are critically investigated on the basis of two-dimensional resistive MHD simulations, confirming and even strengthening the importance of the enthalpy flux in the outflow from the reconnection site.

  8. Synchrotron Cooling in Relativistic Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fish, Jake; Werner, Gregory; Uzdensky, Dmitri

    2016-10-01

    Radiative processes are typically unimportant to the dynamics of plasmas investigated by most magnetic reconnection studies. However, some astrophysical phenomena exhibit conditions in which radiative cooling is significant over dynamic timescales. For example, strong synchrotron cooling controls the energetics of reconnection in magnetospheres of pulsars with strong magnetic fields, including the Crab pulsar. We performed a series of simulations of reconnection in the presence of radiative cooling using the particle-in-cell code Zeltron which self-consistently includes the synchrotron radiation reaction force. We examine the resulting global particle energy distribution, which is strongly cooled by radiation over time at high energies. Basic plasma parameters, such as the average particle energy and density in the reconnection layer and at magnetic O-points, are also measured as functions of radiative cooling's importance. Our results show strong plasma cooling and compression in plasmoids due to radiation well before the reconnecting layer is significantly affected. This work is supported by DOE and NASA.

  9. The role of magnetic reconnection on jet/accretion disk systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Gouveia Dal Pino, E. M.; Piovezan, P. P.; Kadowaki, L. H. S.

    2010-07-01

    Context. It was proposed earlier that the relativistic ejections observed in microquasars could be produced by violent magnetic reconnection episodes at the inner disk coronal region (de Gouveia Dal Pino & Lazarian 2005). Aims: Here we revisit this model, which employs a standard accretion disk description and fast magnetic reconnection theory, and discuss the role of magnetic reconnection and associated heating and particle acceleration in different jet/disk accretion systems, namely young stellar objects (YSOs), microquasars, and active galactic nuclei (AGNs). Methods: In microquasars and AGNs, violent reconnection episodes between the magnetic field lines of the inner disk region and those that are anchored in the black hole are able to heat the coronal/disk gas and accelerate the plasma to relativistic velocities through a diffusive first-order Fermi-like process within the reconnection site that will produce intermittent relativistic ejections or plasmons. Results: The resulting power-law electron distribution is compatible with the synchrotron radio spectrum observed during the outbursts of these sources. A diagram of the magnetic energy rate released by violent reconnection as a function of the black hole (BH) mass spanning 109 orders of magnitude shows that the magnetic reconnection power is more than sufficient to explain the observed radio luminosities of the outbursts from microquasars to low luminous AGNs. In addition, the magnetic reconnection events cause the heating of the coronal gas, which can be conducted back to the disk to enhance its thermal soft X-ray emission as observed during outbursts in microquasars. The decay of the hard X-ray emission right after a radio flare could also be explained in this model due to the escape of relativistic electrons with the evolving jet outburst. In the case of YSOs a similar magnetic configuration can be reached that could possibly produce observed X-ray flares in some sources and provide the heating at the

  10. Three-dimensional relativistic pair plasma reconnection with radiative feedback in the Crab Nebula

    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

    2014-02-20

    The discovery of rapid synchrotron gamma-ray flares above 100 MeV from the Crab Nebula has attracted new interest in alternative particle acceleration mechanisms in pulsar wind nebulae. Diffuse shock-acceleration fails to explain the flares because particle acceleration and emission occur during a single or even sub-Larmor timescale. In this regime, the synchrotron energy losses induce a drag force on the particle motion that balances the electric acceleration and prevents the emission of synchrotron radiation above 160 MeV. Previous analytical studies and two-dimensional (2D) particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations indicate that relativistic reconnection is a viable mechanism to circumvent the above difficulties. The reconnection electric field localized at X-points linearly accelerates particles with little radiative energy losses. In this paper, we check whether this mechanism survives in three dimension (3D), using a set of large PIC simulations with radiation reaction force and with a guide field. In agreement with earlier works, we find that the relativistic drift kink instability deforms and then disrupts the layer, resulting in significant plasma heating but few non-thermal particles. A moderate guide field stabilizes the layer and enables particle acceleration. We report that 3D magnetic reconnection can accelerate particles above the standard radiation reaction limit, although the effect is less pronounced than in 2D with no guide field. We confirm that the highest-energy particles form compact bunches within magnetic flux ropes, and a beam tightly confined within the reconnection layer, which could result in the observed Crab flares when, by chance, the beam crosses our line of sight.

  11. Reconnection and Energetics in Two-ribbon Flares: A Revisit of the Bastille-day Flare

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiu, Jiong; Liu, WenJuan; Hill, Nicholas; Kazachenko, Maria

    2010-12-01

    We conduct a semi-quantitative analysis of two-ribbon flares to investigate the observational relationship between magnetic reconnection and energetics by revisiting the Bastille-day flare, particularly the UV and hard X-ray (HXR) observations. The analysis establishes that prominent UV emission is primarily produced by precipitating electrons that also produce HXRs. In addition, reconnection and subsequent energy release along adjacent field lines along the polarity inversion line (PIL) combined with elongated decay of UV emission may account for the observed extended UV ribbons whereas HXR sources with rapid decay appear mostly as compact kernels. Observations also show that HXR sources and UV brightenings exhibit an organized parallel motion along the magnetic PIL during the rise of the flare, and then the perpendicular expansion of UV ribbons dominate during the peak. With a 2.5 dimensional approximation with the assumed translational dimension along the PIL, we derive geometric properties of UV ribbons and infer the pattern of reconnection as with a varying magnetic guide field during reconnection. It is shown that HXR and UV emissions evolve in a similar way to reconnection rates determined by the perpendicular "motion." The analysis suggests that a relatively strong guide field may be present during the rise of the flare, whereas particle acceleration and non-thermal energy release are probably more efficient with an enhanced reconnection rate with a relatively weak guide field. We discuss the role of the guide field in reconnection and particle energization, as well as novel observational experiments that may be conducted to shed new light on these issues.

  12. Low-Beta MHD Reconnection As a Showcase of Compressible Fluid Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zenitani, S.

    2014-12-01

    In the solar corona, in the magnetosphere, and in other astrophysical settings, magnetic reconnection often occurs in a low-beta plasma. Unfortunately, less is known about low-beta reconnection, partially due to lack of attention and partially due to numerical difficulties. Recent MHD simulations revealed several new features of low-beta reconnection; For example, Zenitani et al.(2010,2011) [1,2] discovered a normal shock which is perpendicular to the Petschek shock and a repeated shock-reflection in front of a magnetic island. In this contribution, we extend earlier works with improved MHD codes and organize the results from the perspective of compressible fluid dynamics. In fluid dynamics, once a flow speed becomes comparable with the local sound speed, various compressible effects take place. This is the case for low-beta reconnection, because an Alfvenic reconnection jet becomes supersonic. Many phenomena can be understood as compressible fluid effects: the normal shock is equivalent to a recompression shock on a transonic airfoil, the shock-reflection corresponds to shock-diamonds in an over-expanded supersonic flow, the adiabatic acceleration similarly takes place as the Laval nozzle, and so on. They appear regardless of Sweet-Parker, plasmoid-mediated, or Petschek reconnections. We further discover another shock-diamonds in extreme cases. A critical condition for these hidden shocks is derived. All these issues can be applied to more extreme cases of relativistic reconnection, in which the sound speed is ``relatively'' slow. We will also address the relevance to the physics of extragalactic jets. References:[1] Zenitani, Hesse, & Klimas, ApJ, 716, L214 (2010).[2] Zenitani and Miyoshi, Phys. Plasmas, 18, 022105 (2011).

  13. Cold ion demagnetization near the X-line of magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toledo-Redondo, Sergio; André, Mats; Khotyaintsev, Yuri V.; Vaivads, Andris; Walsh, Andrew; Li, Wenya; Graham, Daniel B.; Lavraud, Benoit; Masson, Arnaud; Aunai, Nicolas; Divin, Andrey; Dargent, Jeremy; Fuselier, Stephen; Gershman, Daniel J.; Dorelli, John; Giles, Barbara; Avanov, Levon; Pollock, Craig; Saito, Yoshifumi; Moore, Thomas E.; Coffey, Victoria; Chandler, Michael O.; Lindqvist, Per-Arne; Torbert, Roy; Russell, Christopher T.

    2016-07-01

    Although the effects of magnetic reconnection in magnetospheres can be observed at planetary scales, reconnection is initiated at electron scales in a plasma. Surrounding the electron diffusion region, there is an Ion-Decoupling Region (IDR) of the size of the ion length scales (inertial length and gyroradius). Reconnection at the Earth's magnetopause often includes cold magnetospheric (few tens of eV), hot magnetospheric (10 keV), and magnetosheath (1 keV) ions, with different gyroradius length scales. We report observations of a subregion inside the IDR of the size of the cold ion population gyroradius (˜15 km) where the cold ions are demagnetized and accelerated parallel to the Hall electric field. Outside the subregion, cold ions follow the E × B motion together with electrons, while hot ions are demagnetized. We observe a sharp cold ion density gradient separating the two regions, which we identify as the cold and hot IDRs.

  14. Formation of hard power laws in the energetic particle spectra resulting from relativistic magnetic reconnection.

    PubMed

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

    2014-10-10

    Using fully kinetic simulations, we demonstrate that magnetic reconnection in relativistic plasmas is highly efficient at accelerating particles through a first-order Fermi process resulting from the curvature drift of particles in the direction of the electric field induced by the relativistic flows. This mechanism gives rise to the formation of hard power-law spectra in parameter regimes where the energy density in the reconnecting field exceeds the rest mass energy density σ ≡ B(2)/(4πnm(e)c(2))>1 and when the system size is sufficiently large. In the limit σ ≫ 1, the spectral index approaches p = 1 and most of the available energy is converted into nonthermal particles. A simple analytic model is proposed which explains these key features and predicts a general condition under which hard power-law spectra will be generated from magnetic reconnection.

  15. Comparison of Magnetospheric Multiscale Ion Jet Signatures with Predicted Reconnection Site Locations at the Magnetopause

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Petrinec, S. M.; Burch, J. L.; Fuselier, S. A.; Gomez, R. G.; Lewis, W.; Trattner, K. J.; Ergun, R.; Mauk, B.; Pollock, C. J.; Schiff, C.; Strangeway, R. J.; Russell, C. T.; Phan, T.-D.; Young, D.

    2016-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection at the Earths magnetopause is the primary process by which solar wind plasma and energy gains access to the magnetosphere. One indication that magnetic reconnection is occurring is the observation of accelerated plasma as a jet tangential to the magnetopause. The direction of ion jets along the magnetopause surface as observed by the Fast Plasma Instrument (FPI) and the Hot Plasma Composition Analyzer (HPCA) instrument on board the recently launched Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) set of spacecraft is examined. For those cases where ion jets are clearly discerned, the direction of origin compares well statistically with the predicted location of magnetic reconnection using convected solar wind observations in conjunction with the Maximum Magnetic Shear model.

  16. Double layer electric fields aiding the production of energetic flat-top distributions and superthermal electrons within magnetic reconnection exhausts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Egedal, J.; Daughton, W.; Le, A.; Borg, A. L.

    2015-10-01

    Using a kinetic simulation of magnetic reconnection, it was recently shown that magnetic-field-aligned electric fields (E∥) can be present over large spatial scales in reconnection exhausts. The largest values of E∥ are observed within double layers. The existence of double layers in the Earth's magnetosphere is well documented. In our simulation, their formation is triggered by large parallel streaming of electrons into the reconnection region. These parallel electron fluxes are required for maintaining quasi-neutrality of the reconnection region and increase with decreasing values of the normalized electron pressure upstream of the reconnection region, βe∞=2 μ0ne ∞Te ∞/B∞2 . A threshold (βe∞ < 0.02) is derived for strong double layers to develop. We also document how the electron confinement, provided in part by the structure in E∥, allows sustained energization by perpendicular electric fields (E⊥). The energization is a consequence of the confined electrons' chaotic orbital motion that includes drifts aligned with the reconnection electric field. The level of energization is proportional to the initial particle energy and therefore is enhanced by the initial energy boost of the acceleration potential, e Φ∥=e ∫x∞∥ d l , acquired by electrons entering the region. The mechanism is effective in an extended region of the reconnection exhaust allowing for the generation of superthermal electrons in reconnection scenarios, including those with only a single x-line. An expression for the phase-space distribution of the superthermal electrons is derived, providing an accurate match to the kinetic simulation results. The numerical and analytical results agree with detailed spacecraft observations recorded during reconnection events in the Earth's magnetotail.

  17. A Reconnection Switch to Trigger gamma-Ray Burst Jet Dissipation

    SciTech Connect

    McKinney, Jonathan C.; Uzdensky, Dmitri A.

    2012-03-14

    Prompt gamma-ray burst (GRB) emission requires some mechanism to dissipate an ultrarelativistic jet. Internal shocks or some form of electromagnetic dissipation are candidate mechanisms. Any mechanism needs to answer basic questions, such as what is the origin of variability, what radius does dissipation occur at, and how does efficient prompt emission occur. These mechanisms also need to be consistent with how ultrarelativistic jets form and stay baryon pure despite turbulence and electromagnetic reconnection near the compact object and despite stellar entrainment within the collapsar model. We use the latest magnetohydrodynamical models of ultrarelativistic jets to explore some of these questions in the context of electromagnetic dissipation due to the slow collisional and fast collisionless reconnection mechanisms, as often associated with Sweet-Parker and Petschek reconnection, respectively. For a highly magnetized ultrarelativistic jet and typical collapsar parameters, we find that significant electromagnetic dissipation may be avoided until it proceeds catastrophically near the jet photosphere at large radii (r {approx} 10{sup 13}-10{sup 14}cm), by which the jet obtains a high Lorentz factor ({gamma} {approx} 100-1000), has a luminosity of L{sub j} {approx} 10{sup 50}-10{sup 51} erg s{sup -1}, has observer variability timescales of order 1s (ranging from 0.001-10s), achieves {gamma}{theta}{sub j} {approx} 10-20 (for opening half-angle {theta}{sub j}) and so is able to produce jet breaks, and has comparable energy available for both prompt and afterglow emission. A range of model parameters are investigated and simplified scaling laws are derived. This reconnection switch mechanism allows for highly efficient conversion of electromagnetic energy into prompt emission and associates the observed prompt GRB pulse temporal structure with dissipation timescales of some number of reconnecting current sheets embedded in the jet. We hope this work helps motivate the

  18. Magnetic reconnection, merging, and viscous interaction in the magnetosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Heikkila, W. J.

    1990-01-01

    This paper discusses the historical development of the reconnection theory, with consideration given to the effects of a magnetic field within the plasma and the mechanisms of magnetic reconnection, merging, and viscouslike interaction. Particular attention is given to Dungey's (1958, 1961) steady-state reconnection model of the magnetosphere and to its criticism. Observational evidence supporting the reconnection model is presented.

  19. High Frequency Plasma Waves Associated With Solar Wind Reconnection Exhausts: WIND/WAVES Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huttunen, K. E.; Bale, S. D.; Phan, T. D.; Davis, M.; Gosling, J. T.

    2006-12-01

    Observations of strong plasma wave activity near reconnection X-line regions in THE laboratory and in the Earth's magnetosphere have suggested that plasma waves may play AN important role in the reconnection process by providing anomalous resistivity through wave-particle interactions and by accelerating electrons. Recent observations of quasi-steady magnetic reconnection in the solar wind introduces an important new environment to study the role of plasma waves in a collisionless plasma associated with the reconnection process. We have used observations by the WIND spacecraft to study high frequency plasma waves associated with 28 solar wind reconnection exhausts. The TNR (Thermal Noise Receiver) experiment included in the WAVES instrument on WIND measures electric spectral density from 4 to 256 kHz and the TDS (Time Domain Sampler) experiment also included in WAVES samples electric field waveforms at rates up to 120,000 samples/s. A large fraction (79%) of the investigated events showed significant enhancements in the wave power around ~ 4 kHz, while only about one third (39%) of the exhausts were associated with intensifications around THE local electron plasma frequency (few tens of kHz). TDS waveform samples revealed three different wave modes: electron solitary waves, ion acoustic waves and Langmuir waves. The intense plasma waves were most frequently observed close to the X-line and near the exhaust boundaries, although wave emissions were commonly observed elsewhere within the exhausts as well

  20. Quantitative, comprehensive, analytical model for magnetic reconnection in Hall magnetohydrodynamics.

    PubMed

    Simakov, Andrei N; Chacón, L

    2008-09-05

    Dissipation-independent, or "fast", magnetic reconnection has been observed computationally in Hall magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) and predicted analytically in electron MHD. However, a quantitative analytical theory of reconnection valid for arbitrary ion inertial lengths, d{i}, has been lacking and is proposed here for the first time. The theory describes a two-dimensional reconnection diffusion region, provides expressions for reconnection rates, and derives a formal criterion for fast reconnection in terms of dissipation parameters and d{i}. It also confirms the electron MHD prediction that both open and elongated diffusion regions allow fast reconnection, and reveals strong dependence of the reconnection rates on d{i}.

  1. Vortices, Reconnection and Turbulence in High Electron-Beta Plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Stenzel, R. L.

    2004-08-31

    Plasmas in which the kinetic energy exceeds the magnetic energy by a significant factor are common in space and in the laboratory. Such plasmas can convect magnetic fields and create null points in whose vicinity first the ions become unmagnetized, then the electrons. This project focuses on the detailed study of the transition regime of these plasmas.

  2. Reconnection in semicollisional, low-{beta} plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Schmidt, S.; Guenter, S.; Lackner, K.

    2009-07-15

    Reconnection of semicollisional, low-{beta} plasmas is studied numerically for two model problems using a two-field description of the plasma including electron pressure effects (and hence kinetic Alfven-wave dynamics). The tearing unstable Harris sheet, with the global parameters of the Geospace Environment Modeling-challenge case, shows a linear growth of the peak reconnection rate with the drift parameter {rho}{sub s} when this scale is significantly larger than the resistive skin depth, and the island is smaller than the Harris sheet current layer width. As exemplary for a driven, rather than a spontaneous reconnection situation we study as second model system two coalescing islands, starting from a nonequilibrium situation. The peak reconnection rate again increases initially linearly with {rho}{sub s} but saturates and becomes {rho}{sub s} independent for larger values. In this saturated regime, no flux pileup occurs, and the reconnection is limited by the rate of approach of the two coalescing islands. The qualitative differences between spontaneous and driven reconnection cases and their scaling behavior are best understood by considering the reconnection rate as a triple product of outflow Mach number, outflow to inflow channel width ratio, and magnetic energy density at a height {rho}{sub s} above the X point.

  3. Magnetic reconnection in a weakly ionized plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Leake, James E.; Lukin, Vyacheslav S.; Linton, Mark G.

    2013-06-15

    Magnetic reconnection in partially ionized plasmas is a ubiquitous phenomenon spanning the range from laboratory to intergalactic scales, yet it remains poorly understood and relatively little studied. Here, we present results from a self-consistent multi-fluid simulation of magnetic reconnection in a weakly ionized reacting plasma with a particular focus on the parameter regime of the solar chromosphere. The numerical model includes collisional transport, interaction and reactions between the species, and optically thin radiative losses. This model improves upon our previous work in Leake et al.[“Multi-fluid simulations of chromospheric magnetic reconnection in a weakly ionized reacting plasma,” Astrophys. J. 760, 109 (2012)] by considering realistic chromospheric transport coefficients, and by solving a generalized Ohm's law that accounts for finite ion-inertia and electron-neutral drag. We find that during the two dimensional reconnection of a Harris current sheet with an initial width larger than the neutral-ion collisional coupling scale, the current sheet thins until its width becomes less than this coupling scale, and the neutral and ion fluids decouple upstream from the reconnection site. During this process of decoupling, we observe reconnection faster than the single-fluid Sweet-Parker prediction, with recombination and plasma outflow both playing a role in determining the reconnection rate. As the current sheet thins further and elongates, it becomes unstable to the secondary tearing instability, and plasmoids are seen. The reconnection rate, outflows, and plasmoids observed in this simulation provide evidence that magnetic reconnection in the chromosphere could be responsible for jet-like transient phenomena such as spicules and chromospheric jets.

  4. Hinode/XRT Measurements of Turbulent Velocities in Flare Plasma Sheets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKenzie, David; Freed, Michael

    2015-04-01

    The turbulent, dynamic motions that we observe in the hot plasma surrounding current sheets very likely distort the embedded magnetic fields, resulting in reduced length scales and locally augmented resistivities. These conditions may help to accelerate and/or prolong the reconnection in solar flares. Although we cannot as yet measure directly the magnetic fields in the corona, the velocity fields within the flare plasma sheets provide a means to study the conditions that control the spatial and temporal scales of reconnection, in the locations and at the times that are relevant to structuring the magnetic fields.The plasma sheets are observable in many flares in soft X-ray and EUV wavelengths, due to their high temperatures. For two recent flares observed with the Hinode X-Ray Telescope (XRT), we have analyzed the velocity fields with a local correlation tracking technique, and compared to measurements from the Solar Dynamics Observatory Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (SDO/AIA).This work is supported by NASA under contract NNM07AB07C with the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, and by grant NNX14AD43G.

  5. New Expression for Collisionless Magnetic Reconnection Rate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klimas, Alexander J.

    2014-01-01

    For 2D, symmetric, anti-parallel, collisionless magnetic reconnection, a new expression for the reconnection rate in the electron diffusion region is introduced. It is shown that this expression can be derived in just a few simple steps from a physically intuitive starting point; the derivation is given in its entirety and the validity of each step is confirmed. The predictions of this expression are compared to the results of several long-duration, open-boundary PIC reconnection simulations to demonstrate excellent agreement.

  6. New expression for collisionless magnetic reconnection rate

    SciTech Connect

    Klimas, Alex

    2015-04-15

    For 2D, symmetric, anti-parallel, collisionless magnetic reconnection, new expressions for the reconnection rate in the electron diffusion region are introduced. It is shown that these expressions can be derived in just a few simple steps from a physically intuitive starting point; the derivations are given in their entirety, and the validity of each step is confirmed. The predictions of these expressions are compared to the results of several long-duration, open-boundary particle-in-cell reconnection simulations to demonstrate excellent agreement.

  7. ON THE ROLE OF FAST MAGNETIC RECONNECTION IN ACCRETING BLACK HOLE SOURCES

    SciTech Connect

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

    2015-01-30

    We attempt to explain the observed radio and gamma-ray emission produced in the surroundings of black holes by employing a magnetically dominated accretion flow model and fast magnetic reconnection triggered by turbulence. In earlier work, a standard disk model was used and we refine the model by focusing on the sub-Eddington regime to address the fundamental plane of black hole activity. The results do not change substantially with regard to previous work, ensuring that the details of accretion physics are not relevant in the magnetic reconnection process occurring in the corona. Rather, our work puts fast magnetic reconnection events as a powerful mechanism operating in the core region near the jet base of black hole sources on more solid ground. For microquasars and low-luminosity active galactic nuclei, the observed correlation between radio emission and the mass of the sources can be explained by this process. The corresponding gamma-ray emission also seems to be produced in the same core region. On the other hand, emission from blazars and gamma-ray bursts cannot be correlated to core emission based on fast reconnection.

  8. Ion beta dependence on the development of Alfvénic fluctuations in reconnection jets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Higashimori, Katsuaki; Hoshino, Masahiro

    2015-03-01

    The generation of magneto-hydro-dynamic (MHD) to ion-scale fluctuations in collisionless magnetic reconnection is discussed using a two-dimensional electromagnetic hybrid code. It is shown that reconnection jets become turbulent specifically in low beta conditions, βi0<0.1-0.2 (where βi0 is the ion plasma beta in initial inflow regions). The fluctuations observed in reconnection jets consist of outgoing Alfvénic fluctuations. As probable candidates for the origin of Alfvénic fluctuations, this study focused on the dynamics in the plasma sheet boundary layer (PSBL) and a current sheet. We suggest that PSBL ion dynamics play an important part in excitation and suppression of waves. PSBL beam ions drive Alfvén waves in MHD to ion scale, kλi<0.5 (λi is ion inertial length), independent of βi0. On the other hand, because the beam temperature is highly correlated with that of inflowing ions, the waves decay by cyclotron damping as the value of the inflow ion beta increases. Local linear analysis suggests that this damping signature changes in βi0˜0.1-0.2 and suppresses the wave activity of Alfvén modes in high beta reconnection jets.

  9. Observations of Electron Vorticity in the Inner Plasmasheet and Its Relationship to Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gurgiolo, Chris A.; Goldstein, Melvyn L.; Matthaeus, William H.; Vinas, Adolfo -F.

    2011-01-01

    Spatial derivatives of the electron moments can be estimated using data from the four Cluster spacecraft. Using spatial derivatives of the velocity we have computed the vorticity in the plasmasheet for several crossings. What we have found is that vorticity appears to be a common feature in the inner plasmasheet. We will show a number of examples. In at least some of the observations the vorticity is well correlated with the passage of Cluster through the ion diffusion region of known reconnection events. That most of the vorticity events observed are reconnection related cannot be dismissed and in fact observations of vorticity may provide a means to locate times when the Cluster spacecraft are magnetically connected to regions where reconnection is taking place. Understanding the role and source of the vorticity should advance our understanding of the dissipation of the turbulence associated with reconnection. In the course of the presentation we will also touch on the methods used to estimate the spatial derivatives as well as the limitations and assumptions involved.

  10. Three-dimensional MHD Magnetic Reconnection Simulations with a Finite Guide Field: Proposal of the Shock-evoking Positive-feedback Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Shuoyang; Yokoyama, Takaaki; Isobe, Hiroaki

    2015-09-01

    Using a three-dimensional (3D) magnetohydrodynamic model, we simulate the magnetic reconnection in a single current sheet. We assume a finite guide field, a random perturbation on the velocity field, and uniform resistivity. Our model enhances the reconnection rate relative to the classical Sweet-Parker model in the same configuration. The efficiency of magnetic energy conversion is increased by interactions between the multiple tearing layers coexisting in the global current sheet. This interaction, which forms a positive-feedback system, arises from coupling of the inflow and outflow regions in different layers across the current sheet. The coupling accelerates the elementary reconnection events, thereby enhancing the global reconnection rate. The reconnection establishes flux tubes along each tearing layer. Slow-mode shocks gradually form along the outer boundaries of these tubes, further accelerating the magnetic energy conversion. Such a positive-feedback system is absent in two-dimensional simulations, 3D reconnection without a guide field, and reconnection under a single perturbation mode. We refer to our model as the “shock-evoking positive-feedback” model.

  11. THREE-DIMENSIONAL MHD MAGNETIC RECONNECTION SIMULATIONS WITH A FINITE GUIDE FIELD: PROPOSAL OF THE SHOCK-EVOKING POSITIVE-FEEDBACK MODEL

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Shuoyang; Yokoyama, Takaaki; Isobe, Hiroaki

    2015-09-20

    Using a three-dimensional (3D) magnetohydrodynamic model, we simulate the magnetic reconnection in a single current sheet. We assume a finite guide field, a random perturbation on the velocity field, and uniform resistivity. Our model enhances the reconnection rate relative to the classical Sweet–Parker model in the same configuration. The efficiency of magnetic energy conversion is increased by interactions between the multiple tearing layers coexisting in the global current sheet. This interaction, which forms a positive-feedback system, arises from coupling of the inflow and outflow regions in different layers across the current sheet. The coupling accelerates the elementary reconnection events, thereby enhancing the global reconnection rate. The reconnection establishes flux tubes along each tearing layer. Slow-mode shocks gradually form along the outer boundaries of these tubes, further accelerating the magnetic energy conversion. Such a positive-feedback system is absent in two-dimensional simulations, 3D reconnection without a guide field, and reconnection under a single perturbation mode. We refer to our model as the “shock-evoking positive-feedback” model.

  12. `Effective' collisions in weakly magnetized collisionless plasma: importance of Pitaevski's effect for magnetic reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zelenyi, Lev M.; Artemyev, Anton V.

    2016-02-01

    In this paper we revisit the paradigm of space science turbulent dissipation traditionally considered as myth (Coroniti, Space Sci. Rev., vol. 42, 1985, pp. 399-410). We demonstrate that due to approach introduced by Pitaevskii (Sov. J. Expl Theor. Phys., vol. 44, 1963, pp. 969-979 (in Russian)) (the effect of a finite Larmor radius on a classical collision integral) dissipation induced by effective interaction with microturbulence produces a significant effect on plasma dynamics, especially in the vicinity of the reconnection region. We estimate the multiplication factor of collision frequency in the collision integral for short wavelength perturbations. For waves propagating transverse to the background magnetic field, this factor is approximately ρekx)2 an electron gyroradius and where kx a transverse wavenumber. We consider recent spacecraft observations in the Earth's magnetotail reconnection region to the estimate possible impact of this multiplication factor. For small-scale reconnection regions this factor can significantly increase the effective collision frequency produced both by lower-hybrid drift turbulence and by kinetic Alfvén waves. We discuss the possibility that the Pitaevskii's effect may be responsible for the excitation of a resistive electron tearing mode in thin current sheets formed in the outflow region of the primary X-line.

  13. PARTICLE DYNAMICS IN THE RECONNECTING HELIOSPHERIC CURRENT SHEET: SOLAR WIND DATA VERSUS THREE-DIMENSIONAL PARTICLE-IN-CELL SIMULATIONS

    SciTech Connect

    Zharkova, Valentina V.; Khabarova, Olga V. E-mail: habarova@izmiran.ru

    2012-06-10

    In this paper, we apply an assumption of the reconnecting heliospheric current sheet (HCS) for explanation of some contradictory results in the experimental detection of the sector boundaries (SBs) from the interplanetary magnetic field and electron pitch-angle measurements. Trajectories, densities, velocity, and pitch-angle distributions of particles accelerated by a super-Dreicer electric field are investigated with 2.5D full kinetic particle-in-cell approach in the HCS assumed to undergo a slow magnetic reconnection process with magnetic field configurations deduced from the solar wind observations. This approach reveals that during motion in a current sheet both kinds of particles, electrons and protons, are to be separated, either fully or partially, with respect to its midplane that can lead to their ejection to the opposite semiplanes that was also observed during the HCS crossings. This separation is found to form Hall's currents and polarization electric field across the current sheet, which distribution over the current sheets allows us to reproduce the magnitudes and temporal profiles of proton and ion velocities measured across the SB (current sheet midplane). This separation process, in turn, divides both kinds of particles on 'transit' and 'bounced' ones depending on a side of the current sheet where they enter it and where they are supposed to be ejected. The transit and bounced protons reproduce rather closely the measured distributions of proton/ion densities about the current sheet midplane with a larger maximum occurring at the heliospheric SB to be formed by the bounced protons and the other two smaller maximums on both sides from the central one to be formed by 'transit' protons. The observed electron distributions of density and energy before and after sector boundary crossings are found to fit the simulated ones for electrons accelerated in a current sheet revealing a sharp increase of density from one side from the HCS boundary and a

  14. Physics of collisionless reconnection in a stressed X-point collapse

    SciTech Connect

    Tsiklauri, D.; Haruki, T.

    2008-10-15

    Recently, magnetic reconnection during collisionless, stressed, X-point collapse was studied using kinetic, 2.5-dimensional, fully electromagnetic, relativistic particle-in-cell numerical code [D. Tsiklauri and T. Haruki, Phys. Plasmas 14, 112905 (2007)]. Here we finalize the investigation of this topic by addressing key outstanding physical questions: (i) Which term in the generalized Ohm's law is responsible for the generation of the reconnection electric field? (ii) How does the time evolution of the reconnected flux vary with the ion-electron mass ratio? (iii) What is the exact energy budget of the reconnection process; i.e., in which proportion initial (mostly magnetic) energy is converted into other forms of energy? (iv) Are there any anisotropies in the velocity distribution of the accelerated particles? The following points have been established. (i) A reconnection electric field is generated by the electron pressure tensor off-diagonal terms, resembling to the case of tearing unstable Harris current sheet studied by the GEM reconnection challenge. (ii) For m{sub i}/m{sub e}>>1, the time evolution of the reconnected flux is independent of ion-electron mass ratio. In addition, in the case of m{sub i}/m{sub e}=1, we show that reconnection proceeds slowly as the Hall term is zero; when m{sub i}/m{sub e}>>1 (i.e., the Hall term is nonzero) reconnection is fast and we conjecture that this is due to magnetic field being frozen into electron fluid, which moves significantly faster than ion fluid. (iii) Within one Alfven time, somewhat less than half ({approx}40%) of the initial total (roughly magnetic) energy is converted into the kinetic energy of electrons, and somewhat more than half ({approx}60%) into kinetic energy of ions (similar to solar flare observations). (iv) In the strongly stressed X-point case, in about one Alfven time, a full isotropy in all three spatial directions of the velocity distribution is seen for superthermal electrons (also commensurate

  15. Electron Energization and Mixing Observed by MMS in the Vicinity of an Electron Diffusion Region During Magnetopause Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chen, Li-Jen; Hesse, Michael; Wang, Shan; Gershman, Daniel; Ergun, Robert; Pollock, Craig; Torbert, Roy; Bessho, Naoki; Daughton, William; Dorelli, John; Giles, Barbara; Moore, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Measurements from the Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission are reported to show distinct features of electron energization and mixing in the diffusion region of the terrestrial magnetopause reconnection. At the ion jet and magnetic field reversals, distribution functions exhibiting signatures of accelerated meandering electrons are observed at an electron out-of-plane flow peak. The meandering signatures manifested as triangular and crescent structures are established features of the electron diffusion region (EDR). Effects of meandering electrons on the electric field normal to the reconnection layer are detected. Parallel acceleration and mixing of the inflowing electrons with exhaust electrons shape the exhaust flow pattern. In the EDR vicinity, the measured distribution functions indicate that locally, the electron energization and mixing physics is captured by two-dimensional reconnection, yet to account for the simultaneous four-point measurements, translational invariant in the third dimension must be violated on the ion-skin-depth scale.

  16. RESISTIVE MAGNETOHYDRODYNAMIC SIMULATIONS OF RELATIVISTIC MAGNETIC RECONNECTION

    SciTech Connect

    Zenitani, Seiji; Hesse, Michael; Klimas, Alex

    2010-06-20

    Resistive relativistic magnetohydrodynamic (RRMHD) simulations are applied to investigate the system evolution of relativistic magnetic reconnection. A time-split Harten-Lan-van Leer method is employed. Under a localized resistivity, the system exhibits a fast reconnection jet with an Alfvenic Lorentz factor inside a narrow Petschek-type exhaust. Various shock structures are resolved in and around the plasmoid such as the post-plasmoid vertical shocks and the 'diamond-chain' structure due to multiple shock reflections. Under a uniform resistivity, Sweet-Parker-type reconnection slowly evolves. Under a current-dependent resistivity, plasmoids are repeatedly formed in an elongated current sheet. It is concluded that the resistivity model is of critical importance for RRMHD modeling of relativistic magnetic reconnection.

  17. Resistive Magnetohydrodynamic Simulations of Relativistic Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zenitani, Seiji; Hesse, Michael; Klimas, Alex

    2010-01-01

    Resistive relativistic magnetohydrodynamic (RRMHD) simulations are applied to investigate the system evolution of relativistic magnetic reconnection. A time-split Harten-Lan-van Leer method is employed. Under a localized resistivity, the system exhibits a fast reconnection jet with an Alfv enic Lorentz factor inside a narrow Petschek-type exhaust. Various shock structures are resolved in and around the plasmoid such as the post-plasmoid vertical shocks and the "diamond-chain" structure due to multiple shock reflections. Under a uniform resistivity, Sweet-Parker-type reconnection slowly evolves. Under a current-dependent resistivity, plasmoids are repeatedly formed in an elongated current sheet. It is concluded that the resistivity model is of critical importance for RRMHD modeling of relativistic magnetic reconnection.

  18. Magnetic Reconnection Models of Prominence Formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Welsch, B. T.; DeVore, C. R.; Antiochos, S. K.

    2005-12-01

    To investigate the hypothesis that prominences form by magnetic reconnection between initially distinct flux systems in the solar corona, we simulate coronal magnetic field evolution when two flux systems are driven together by boundary motions. In particular, we focus on configurations similar to those in the quiescent prominence formation model of Martens & Zwaan. We find that reconnection proceeds very weakly, if at all, in configurations driven with global shear flows (i.e., differential rotation); reconnection proceeds much more efficiently in similar configurations that are driven to collide directly, with converging motions along the neutral line that lead to flux cancellation; reconnected fields from this process can exhibit sheared, dipped field lines along the neutral line, consistent with prominence observations. Our field configurations do not possess the ``breakout'' topology, and eruptions are not observed, even though a substantial amount of flux is canceled in some runs.

  19. Resistive Magnetohydrodynamic Simulations of Relativistic Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zenitani, Seiji; Hesse, Michael; Klimas, Alex

    2010-06-01

    Resistive relativistic magnetohydrodynamic (RRMHD) simulations are applied to investigate the system evolution of relativistic magnetic reconnection. A time-split Harten-Lan-van Leer method is employed. Under a localized resistivity, the system exhibits a fast reconnection jet with an Alfvénic Lorentz factor inside a narrow Petschek-type exhaust. Various shock structures are resolved in and around the plasmoid such as the post-plasmoid vertical shocks and the "diamond-chain" structure due to multiple shock reflections. Under a uniform resistivity, Sweet-Parker-type reconnection slowly evolves. Under a current-dependent resistivity, plasmoids are repeatedly formed in an elongated current sheet. It is concluded that the resistivity model is of critical importance for RRMHD modeling of relativistic magnetic reconnection.

  20. Characterization of reconnecting vortices in superfluid helium

    PubMed Central

    Bewley, Gregory P.; Paoletti, Matthew S.; Sreenivasan, Katepalli R.; Lathrop, Daniel P.

    2008-01-01

    When two vortices cross, each of them breaks into two parts and exchanges part of itself for part of the other. This process, called vortex reconnection, occurs in classical and superfluids, and in magnetized plasmas and superconductors. We present the first experimental observations of reconnection between quantized vortices in superfluid helium. We do so by imaging micrometer-sized solid hydrogen particles trapped on quantized vortex cores and by inferring the occurrence of reconnection from the motions of groups of recoiling particles. We show that the distance separating particles on the just-reconnected vortex lines grows as a power law in time. The average value of the scaling exponent is approximately ½, consistent with the self-similar evolution of the vortices. PMID:18768790

  1. Evidence for reconnection at Saturn's magnetopause

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McAndrews, H. J.; Owen, C. J.; Thomsen, M. F.; Lavraud, B.; Coates, A. J.; Dougherty, M. K.; Young, D. T.

    2008-04-01

    Observations of Saturn's magnetopause by the Cassini Plasma Spectrometer (CAPS) and magnetometer have revealed clear instances of magnetic reconnection signatures, two of which are described here. Both encounters occurred at the equator in the prenoon sector as Cassini was exiting the magnetosphere. Evidence of heating in the electrons and ions is highly suggestive of energization comparable to that associated with the reconnection process at Earth. In one case, the fields are strongly antiparallel and the magnetic data indicate the presence of a locally open magnetic field. In the other example, magnetic data indicate a locally closed magnetic field compatible with the field lines being locally parallel, but the particle signatures lead to the conclusion of a distant reconnection site poleward of the cusps being active. The reconnection voltage for the first case is calculated to be 48 kV, which is of the same order as previous estimates at Saturn. This is lower than the corotational voltage but is not insignificant.

  2. Forcing continuous reconnection in hybrid simulations

    SciTech Connect

    Laitinen, T. V. Janhunen, P.; Jarvinen, R.; Kallio, E.

    2014-07-15

    We have performed hybrid simulations of driven continuous reconnection with open boundary conditions. Reconnection is started by a collision of two subsonic plasma fronts with opposite magnetic fields, without any specified magnetic field configuration as initial condition. Due to continued forced plasma inflow, a current sheet co-located with a dense and hot plasma sheet develops. The translational symmetry of the current sheet is broken by applying a spatial gradient in the inflow speed. We compare runs with and without localized resistivity: reconnection is initiated in both cases, but localized resistivity stabilizes it and enhances its efficiency. The outflow speed reaches about half of Alfvén speed. We quantify the conversion of magnetic energy to kinetic energy of protons and to Joule heating and show that with localized resistivity, kinetic energy of protons is increased on average five-fold in the reconnection in our simulation case.

  3. Relativistic Magnetic Reconnection in the Laboratory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krushelnick, Karl; Raymond, Anthony; Dong, Cf; McKelvey, A.; Zulick, C.; Alexander, N.; Bhattacharjee, A.; Campbell, Pt; Chen, H.; Chvykov, V.; Del Rio, E.; Fitzsimmons, P.; Fox, W.; Hou, Bx; Maksimchuk, A.; Mileham, C.; Nees, J.; Nilson, Pm; Stoekl, C.; Thomas, Agr; Wei, Ms; Yanovsky, V.; Willingale, L.

    2016-10-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a fundamental plasma process involving an exchange of magnetic energy to plasma kinetic energy through changes in the magnetic field topology. Here we present experimental measurements using the OMEGA EP laser at LLE and the HERCULES laser at the University of Michigan as well as numerical modeling which indicate that relativistic magnetic reconnection can be driven by short-pulse, high-intensity lasers that produce a relativistic plasma along with very strong magnetic fields. Evidence of magnetic reconnection was identified by the plasma's X-ray emission patterns, changes to the electron energy spectrum, and by measuring the time over which reconnection occurs. Funded by DOE Award No. DE-NA0002727.

  4. Relating magnetic reconnection to coronal heating.

    PubMed

    Longcope, D W; Tarr, L A

    2015-05-28

    It is clear that the solar corona is being heated and that coronal magnetic fields undergo reconnection all the time. Here we attempt to show that these two facts are related--i.e. coronal reconnection generates heat. This attempt must address the fact that topological change of field lines does not automatically generate heat. We present one case of flux emergence where we have measured the rate of coronal magnetic reconnection and the rate of energy dissipation in the corona. The ratio of these two, [Formula: see text], is a current comparable to the amount of current expected to flow along the boundary separating the emerged flux from the pre-existing flux overlying it. We can generalize this relation to the overall corona in quiet Sun or in active regions. Doing so yields estimates for the contribution to coronal heating from magnetic reconnection. These estimated rates are comparable to the amount required to maintain the corona at its observed temperature.

  5. Relating magnetic reconnection to coronal heating

    PubMed Central

    Longcope, D. W.; Tarr, L. A.

    2015-01-01

    It is clear that the solar corona is being heated and that coronal magnetic fields undergo reconnection all the time. Here we attempt to show that these two facts are related—i.e. coronal reconnection generates heat. This attempt must address the fact that topological change of field lines does not automatically generate heat. We present one case of flux emergence where we have measured the rate of coronal magnetic reconnection and the rate of energy dissipation in the corona. The ratio of these two, , is a current comparable to the amount of current expected to flow along the boundary separating the emerged flux from the pre-existing flux overlying it. We can generalize this relation to the overall corona in quiet Sun or in active regions. Doing so yields estimates for the contribution to coronal heating from magnetic reconnection. These estimated rates are comparable to the amount required to maintain the corona at its observed temperature. PMID:25897089

  6. The Role of Geometry in Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hesse, Michael; Aunai, Nicholas; Birn, Joachim; Zenitani, Seiji

    2012-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection is arguably the most effective energy conversion and transport process in plasmas. Reconnection is subject to topological considerations in two ways. First, the process itself involves a change in topology of the combined plasma-magnetic field system. This change in topology transcends that of the magnetic field alone and accounts for flux transport relative to the motion of the plasma in the system under investigation. The second way topology is important to magnetic reconnection is through modifications of the diffUSion/dissipation physics brought about by the structure of the reconnecting system. This presentation will present an overview and summary of both past and recent results pertaining to both aspects.

  7. Multi-Scale Modeling of Magnetospheric Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuznetsova, M. M.; Hesse, M.; Rastatter, L.; Toth, G.; Dezeeuw, D.; Gomobosi, T.

    2007-01-01

    One of the major challenges in modeling the magnetospheric magnetic reconnection is to quantify the interaction between large-scale global magnetospheric dynamics and microphysical processes in diffusion regions near reconnection sites. There is still considerable debate as to what degree microphysical processes on kinetic scales affect the global evolution and how important it is to substitute numerical dissipation and/or ad hoc anomalous resistivity by a physically motivated model of dissipation. Comparative studies of magnetic reconnection in small scale geometries demonstrated that MHD simulations that included non-ideal processes in terms of a resistive term $\\eta J$ did not produce the fast reconnection rates observed in kinetic simulations. For a broad range of physical parameters in collisionless magnetospheric plasma, the primary mechanism controlling the dissipation in the vicinity of the reconnection site is non-gyrotropic effects with spatial scales comparable with the particle Larmor radius. We utilize the global MHD code BATSRUS and incorporate nongyrotropic effects in diffusion regions in terms of corrections to the induction equation. We developed an algorithm to search for magnetotail reconnection sites, specifically where the magnetic field components perpendicular to the local current direction approaches zero and form an X-type configuration. Spatial scales of the diffusion region and magnitude of the reconnection electric field are calculated selfconsistently using MHD plasma and field parameters in the vicinity of the reconnection site. The location of the reconnection sites is updated during the simulations. To clarify the role of nongyrotropic effects in diffusion region on the global magnetospheric dynamic we perform simulations with steady southward IMF driving of the magnetosphere. Ideal MHD simulations with magnetic reconnection supported by numerical resistivity produce steady configuration with almost stationary near-earth neutral

  8. Patchy reconnection in the solar corona

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guidoni, Silvina Esther

    2011-05-01

    Magnetic reconnection in plasmas, a process characterized by a change in connectivity of field lines that are broken and connected to other ones with different topology, owes its usefulness to its ability to unify a wide range of phenomena within a single universal principle. There are newly observed phenomena in the solar corona that cannot be reconciled with two-dimensional or steady-state standard models of magnetic reconnection. Supra-arcade downflows (SADs) and supra-arcade downflowing loops (SADLs) descending from reconnection regions toward solar post-flare arcades seem to be two different observational signatures of retracting, isolated reconnected flux tubes with irreducible three-dimensional geometries. This dissertation describes work in refining and improving a novel model of patchy reconnection, where only a small bundle of field lines is reconnected across a current sheet (magnetic discontinuity) and forms a reconnected thin flux tube. Traditional models have not been able to explain why some of the observed SADs appear to be hot and relatively devoid of plasma. The present work shows that plasma depletion naturally occurs in flux tubes that are reconnected across nonuniform current sheets and slide trough regions of decreasing magnetic field magnitude. Moreover, through a detailed theoretical analysis of generalized thin flux tube equations, we show that the addition to the model of pressure-driven parallel dynamics, as well as temperature-dependent, anisotropic viscosity and thermal conductivity is essential for self-consistently producing gas-dynamic shocks inside reconnected tubes that heat and compress plasma to observed temperatures and densities. The shock thickness can be as long as the entire tube and heat can be conducted along tube's legs, possibly driving chromospheric evaporation. We developed a computer program that solves numerically the thin flux tube equations that govern the retraction of reconnected tubes. Simulations carried out

  9. Turbulent scaling in fluids

    SciTech Connect

    Ecke, R.; Li, Ning; Chen, Shiyi; Liu, Yuanming

    1996-11-01

    This is the final report of a three-year, Laboratory-Directed Research and Development (LDRD) project at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). The project was a study of turbulence in fluids that are subject to different body forces and to external temperature gradients. Our focus was on the recent theoretical prediction that the Kolomogorov picture of turbulence may need to be modified for turbulent flows driven by buoyancy and subject to body forces such as rotational accelerations. Models arising from this research are important in global climate modeling, in turbulent transport problems, and in the fundamental understanding of fluid turbulence. Experimentally, we use (1) precision measurements of heat transport and local temperature; (2) flow visualization using digitally- enhanced optical shadowgraphs, particle-image velocimetry, thermochromic liquid-crystal imaging, laser-doppler velocimetry, and photochromic dye imaging; and (3) advanced image- processing techniques. Our numerical simulations employ standard spectral and novel lattice Boltzmann algorithms implemented on parallel Connection Machine computers to simulate turbulent fluid flow. In laboratory experiments on incompressible fluids, we measure probability distribution functions and two-point spatial correlations of temperature T and velocity V (both T-T and V-T correlations) and determine scaling relations for global heat transport with Rayleigh number. We also explore the mechanism for turbulence in thermal convection and the stability of the thermal boundary layer.

  10. The Diffusion Region in Collisionless Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hesse, Michael; Neukirch, Thomas; Schindler, Karl; Kuznetsova, Masha; Zenitani, Seiji

    2011-01-01

    A review of present understanding of the dissipation region in magnetic reconnection is presented. The review focuses on results of the thermal inertia-based dissipation mechanism but alternative mechanisms are mentioned as well. For the former process, a combination of analytical theory and numerical modeling is presented. Furthermore, a new relation between the electric field expressions for anti-parallel and guide field reconnection is developed.

  11. Impulsive Reconnection in the Sun's Atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Antiochos, Spiro K.

    2009-01-01

    Recent high-resolution observations from the Hinode mission show dramatically that the Sun's atmosphere is filled with explosive activity ranging from chromospheric explosions that reach heights of Mm, to coronal jets that can extend to solar radii, to giant coronal mass ejections (CME) that reach the edge of the heliosphere. The driver for all this activity is believed to be 3D magnetic reconnection. From the large variation observed in the temporal behavior of solar activity, it is clear that reconnection in the corona must take on a variety of distinct forms. The explosive nature of jets and CMEs requires that the reconnection be impulsive in that it stays off until a substantial store of free energy has been accumulated, but then turns on abruptly and stays on until much of this free energy is released. The key question, therefore, is what determines whether the reconnection is impulsive or not. We present some of the latest observations and numerical models of explosive and non-explosive solar activity. We argue that, in order for the reconnection to be impulsive, it must be driven by a quasi-ideal instability. We discuss the generality of our results for understanding 31) reconnection in other contexts.

  12. 3D Hall MHD Reconnection Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huba, J. D.; Rudakov, L.

    2002-05-01

    A 3D Hall MHD simulation code (VooDoo) has recently been developed at the Naval Research Laboratory. We present preliminary results of a fully 3D magnetic reconnection study using this code. The initial configuration of the plasma system is as follows. The ambient, reversed magnetic field is in the x-direction and is proportional to B0 tanh(y/Ly) where Ly is the scale length of the current sheet. Perturbation fields δ Bx and δ By are introduced to initiate the reconnection process. This initial configuration is similar to that used in the 2D GEM reconnection study. However, the perturbation fields are localized in the z-direction. We consider two cases: no guide field (Bz = 0) and a weak guide field (Bz = 0.1B0). We find that the reconnection process is not stationary in the z-direction but propagates in the B x ∇ n direction consistent with Hall drift physics. Hence, an asymmetric disruption of the current sheet ensues. The flow structure of the plasma in the vicinity of the X-point is complex. We find that the `neutral line' (i.e, along the z-direction) is not an ignorable coordinate and is not periodic in Hall MHD reconnection dynamics; two assumptions that are often made in reconnection studies. \\ Research supported by NASA and ONR

  13. Asymmetric Magnetic Reconnection in the Solar Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murphy, N. A.; Miralles, M. P.; Ranquist, D. A.; Pope, C. L.; Raymond, J. C.; Lukin, V. S.; McKillop, S.; Shen, C.; Winter, H. D.; Reeves, K. K.; Lin, J.

    2013-12-01

    Models of solar flares and coronal mass ejections typically predict the development of an elongated current sheet in the wake behind the rising flux rope. In reality, reconnection in these current sheets will be asymmetric along the inflow, outflow, and out-of-plane directions. We perform resistive MHD simulations to investigate the consequences of asymmetry during solar reconnection. We predict several observational signatures of asymmetric reconnection, including flare loops with a skewed candle flame shape, slow drifting of the current sheet into the strong field upstream region, asymmetric footpoint speeds and hard X-ray emission, and rolling motions within the erupting flux rope. There is net plasma flow across the magnetic field null along both the inflow and outflow directions. We compare simulations to SDO/AIA, Hinode/XRT, and STEREO observations of flare loop shapes, current sheet drifting, and rolling motions during prominence eruptions. Simulations of the plasmoid instability with different upstream magnetic fields show that the reconnection rate remains enhanced even during the asymmetric case. The islands preferentially grow into the weak field upstream region. The islands develop net vorticity because the outflow jets impact them obliquely rather than directly. Asymmetric reconnection in the chromosphere occurs when emerging flux interacts with pre-existing overlying flux. We present initial results on asymmetric reconnection in partially ionized chromospheric plasmas. Finally, we discuss how comparisons to observations are necessary to understand the role of three-dimensional effects.

  14. Asymmetric Magnetic Reconnection in the Solar Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murphy, N. A.; Miralles, M. P.; Ranquist, D. A.; Pope, C. L.; Raymond, J. C.; Lukin, V. S.; McKillop, S. C.; Shen, C.; Winter, H. D.; Reeves, K. K.; Lin, J.

    2013-12-01

    Models of solar flares and coronal mass ejections typically predict the development of an elongated current sheet in the wake behind the rising flux rope. In reality, reconnection in these current sheets will be asymmetric along the inflow, outflow, and out-of-plane directions. We perform resistive MHD simulations to investigate the consequences of asymmetry during solar reconnection. We predict several observational signatures of asymmetric reconnection, including flare loops with a skewed candle flame shape, slow drifting of the current sheet into the strong field upstream region, asymmetric footpoint speeds and hard X-ray emission, and rolling motions within the erupting flux rope. There is net plasma flow across the magnetic field null along both the inflow and outflow directions. We compare simulations to SDO/AIA, Hinode/XRT, and STEREO observations of flare loop shapes, current sheet drifting, and rolling motions during prominence eruptions. Simulations of the plasm! oid instability with different upstream magnetic fields show that the reconnection rate remains enhanced even during the asymmetric case. The islands preferentially grow into the weak field upstream region. The islands develop net vorticity because the outflow jets impact them obliquely rather than directly. Asymmetric reconnection in the chromosphere occurs when emerging flux interacts with pre-existing overlying flux. We present initial results on asymmetric reconnection in partially ionized chromospheric plasmas. Finally, we discuss how comparisons to observations are necessary to understand the role of three-dimensional effects.

  15. Energy release and transfer in guide field reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Birn, J.; Hesse, M.

    2010-01-15

    Properties of energy release and transfer by magnetic reconnection in the presence of a guide field are investigated on the basis of 2.5-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) and particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations. Two initial configurations are considered: a plane current sheet with a uniform guide field of 80% of the reconnecting magnetic field component and a force-free current sheet in which the magnetic field strength is constant but the field direction rotates by 180 deg. through the current sheet. The onset of reconnection is stimulated by localized, temporally limited compression. Both MHD and PIC simulations consistently show that the outgoing energy fluxes are dominated by (redirected) Poynting flux and enthalpy flux, whereas bulk kinetic energy flux and heat flux (in the PIC simulation) are small. The Poynting flux is mainly associated with the magnetic energy of the guide field which is carried from inflow to outflow without much alteration. The conversion of annihilated magnetic energy to enthalpy flux (that is, thermal energy) stems mainly from the fact that the outflow occurs into a closed field region governed by approximate force balance between Lorentz and pressure gradient forces. Therefore, the energy converted from magnetic to kinetic energy by Lorentz force acceleration becomes immediately transferred to thermal energy by the work done by the pressure gradient force. Strong similarities between late stages of MHD and PIC simulations result from the fact that conservation of mass and entropy content and footpoint displacement of magnetic flux tubes, imposed in MHD, are also approximately satisfied in the PIC simulations.

  16. ENERGY DISSIPATION PROCESSES IN SOLAR WIND TURBULENCE

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Y.; Wei, F. S.; Feng, X. S.; Sun, T. R.; Zuo, P. B.; Xu, X. J.; Zhang, J.

    2015-12-15

    Turbulence is a chaotic flow regime filled by irregular flows. The dissipation of turbulence is a fundamental problem in the realm of physics. Theoretically, dissipation ultimately cannot be achieved without collisions, and so how turbulent kinetic energy is dissipated in the nearly collisionless solar wind is a challenging problem. Wave particle interactions and magnetic reconnection (MR) are two possible dissipation mechanisms, but which mechanism dominates is still a controversial topic. Here we analyze the dissipation region scaling around a solar wind MR region. We find that the MR region shows unique multifractal scaling in the dissipation range, while the ambient solar wind turbulence reveals a monofractal dissipation process for most of the time. These results provide the first observational evidences for intermittent multifractal dissipation region scaling around a MR site, and they also have significant implications for the fundamental energy dissipation process.

  17. STATISTICAL AND SCALING FEATURES OF FLUCTUATIONS IN THE DISSIPATION RANGE DURING A RECONNECTION EVENT

    SciTech Connect

    Consolini, G.; Grandioso, S.; Marcucci, M. F.; Pallocchia, G.; Yordanova, E.

    2015-05-01

    Reconnection events in space plasmas are accompanied by the occurrence of large-amplitude turbulent fluctuations of the magnetic and electric field, covering a wide range of temporal and spatial scales. Here, we study the scaling and statistical features of magnetic and electric field fluctuations below the ion-gyroperiod (i.e., in the dissipation domain) by carefully investigating the occurrence of local or global scaling features during a reconnection event studied by Eastwood et al . Our results point toward the presence of a global scale invariance, i.e., a mono-fractal nature, of fluctuations above the ion-cyclotron frequency and at spatial scales near the ion-inertial length.

  18. INJECTION OF PLASMA INTO THE NASCENT SOLAR WIND VIA RECONNECTION DRIVEN BY SUPERGRANULAR ADVECTION

    SciTech Connect

    Yang Liping; He Jiansen; Tu Chuanyi; Chen Wenlei; Zhang Lei; Wang Linghua; Yan Limei; Peter, Hardi; Marsch, Eckart; Feng, Xueshang

    2013-06-10

    To understand the origin of the solar wind is one of the key research topics in modern solar and heliospheric physics. Previous solar wind models assumed that plasma flows outward along a steady magnetic flux tube that reaches continuously from the photosphere through the chromosphere into the corona. Inspired by more recent comprehensive observations, Tu et al. suggested a new scenario for the origin of the solar wind, in which it flows out in a magnetically open coronal funnel and mass is provided to the funnel by small-scale side loops. Thus mass is supplied by means of magnetic reconnection that is driven by supergranular convection. To validate this scenario and simulate the processes involved, a 2.5 dimensional (2.5D) numerical MHD model is established in the present paper. In our simulation a closed loop moves toward an open funnel, which has opposite polarity and is located at the edge of a supergranulation cell, and magnetic reconnection is triggered and continues while gradually opening up one half of the closed loop. Its other half connects with the root of the open funnel and forms a new closed loop which is submerged by a reconnection plasma stream flowing downward. Thus we find that the outflowing plasma in the newly reconnected funnel originates not only from the upward reconnection flow but also from the high-pressure leg of the originally closed loop. This implies an efficient supply of mass from the dense loop to the dilute funnel. The mass flux of the outflow released from the funnel considered in our study is calculated to be appropriate for providing the mass flux at the coronal base of the solar wind, though additional heating and acceleration mechanisms are necessary to keep the velocity at the higher location. Our numerical model demonstrates that in the funnel the mass for the solar wind may be supplied from adjacent closed loops via magnetic reconnection as well as directly from the footpoints of open funnels.

  19. Formation and Reconnection of Three-Dimensional Current Sheets in the Solar Corona

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edmondson, J. K.; Antiochos, S. K.; DeVore, C. R.; Zurbuchen, T. H.

    2010-01-01

    Current-sheet formation and magnetic reconnection are believed to be the basic physical processes responsible for much of the activity observed in astrophysical plasmas, such as the Sun s corona. We investigate these processes for a magnetic configuration consisting of a uniform background field and an embedded line dipole, a topology that is expected to be ubiquitous in the corona. This magnetic system is driven by a uniform horizontal flow applied at the line-tied photosphere. Although both the initial field and the driver are translationally symmetric, the resulting evolution is calculated using a fully three-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic (3D MHD) simulation with adaptive mesh refinement that resolves the current sheet and reconnection dynamics in detail. The advantage of our approach is that it allows us to apply directly the vast body of knowledge gained from the many studies of 2D reconnection to the fully 3D case. We find that a current sheet forms in close analogy to the classic Syrovatskii 2D mechanism, but the resulting evolution is different than expected. The current sheet is globally stable, showing no evidence for a disruption or a secondary instability even for aspect ratios as high as 80:1. The global evolution generally follows the standard Sweet- Parker 2D reconnection model except for an accelerated reconnection rate at a very thin current sheet, due to the tearing instability and the formation of magnetic islands. An interesting conclusion is that despite the formation of fully 3D structures at small scales, the system remains close to 2D at global scales. We discuss the implications of our results for observations of the solar corona. Subject Headings: Sun: corona Sun: magnetic fields Sun: reconnection

  20. Magnetic Reconnection Dynamics in the Presence of Low-energy Ion Component: PIC Simulations of Hidden Particle Population

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khotyaintsev, Y. V.; Divin, A. V.; Toledo Redondo, S.; Andre, M.; Vaivads, A.; Markidis, S.; Lapenta, G.

    2015-12-01

    Magnetospheric and astrophysical plasmas are rarely in the state of thermal equilibrium. Plasma distribution functions may contain beams, supra-thermal tails, multiple ion and electron populations which are not thermalized over long time scales due to the lack of collisions between particles. In particular, the equatorial region of the dayside Earth's magnetosphere is often populated by plasma containing hot and cold ion components of comparable densities [Andre and Cully, 2012], and such ion distribution alters properties of the magnetic reconnection regions at the magnetopause [Toledo-Redondo et. al., 2015]. Motivated by these recent findings and also by fact that this region is one of the targets of the recently launched MMS mission, we performed 2D PIC simulations of magnetic reconnection in collisionless plasma with hot and cold ion components. We used a standard Harris current sheet, to which a uniform cold ion background is added. We found that introduction of the cold component modifies the structure of reconnection diffusion region. Diffusion region displays three-scale structure, with the cold Ion Diffusion Region (cIDR) scale appearing in-between the Electron Diffusion Region (EDR) and Ion Diffusion Region (IDR) scales. Structure and strength of the Hall magnetic field depends weakly on cold ion temperature or density, and is rather controlled by the conditions (B, n) upstream the reconnection region. The cold ions are accelerated predominantly transverse to the magnetic field by the Hall electric fields inside the IDR, leading to a large ion pressure anisotropy, which is unstable to ion Weibel-type or mirror-type mode. On the opposite, acceleration of cold ions is mostly field-aligned at the reconnection jet fronts downstream the X-line, producing intense ion phase-space holes there. Despite comparable reconnection rates produced , we find that the overall evolution of reconnection in presence of cold ion population is more dynamic compared to the case

  1. Magnetic field generation, Weibel-mediated collisionless shocks, and magnetic reconnection in colliding laser-produced plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fox, W.; Bhattacharjee, A.; Fiksel, G.

    2016-10-01

    Colliding plasmas are ubiquitous in astrophysical environments and allow conversion of kinetic energy into heat and, most importantly, the acceleration of particles to extremely high energies to form the cosmic ray spectrum. In collisionless astrophysical plasmas, kinetic plasma processes govern the interaction and particle acceleration processes, including shock formation, self-generation of magnetic fields by kinetic plasma instabilities, and magnetic field compression and reconnection. How each of these contribute to the observed spectra of cosmic rays is not fully understood, in particular both shock acceleration processes and magnetic reconnection have been proposed. We will review recent results of laboratory astrophysics experiments conducted at high-power, inertial-fusion-class laser facilities, which have uncovered significant results relevant to these processes. Recent experiments have now observed the long-sought Weibel instability between two interpenetrating high temperature plasma plumes, which has been proposed to generate the magnetic field necessary for shock formation in unmagnetized regimes. Secondly, magnetic reconnection has been studied in systems of colliding plasmas using either self-generated magnetic fields or externally applied magnetic fields, and show extremely fast reconnection rates, indicating fast destruction of magnetic energy and further possibilities to accelerate particles. Finally, we highlight kinetic plasma simulations, which have proven to be essential tools in the design and interpretation of these experiments.

  2. Magnetic field generation, Weibel-mediated collisionless shocks, and magnetic reconnection in colliding laser-produced plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fox, William

    2015-08-01

    Colliding plasmas are ubiquitous in astrophysical environments and allow conversion of kinetic energy into heat and, most importantly, the acceleration of particles to extremely high energies to form the cosmic ray spectrum. In collisionless astrophysical plasmas, kinetic plasma processes govern the interaction and particle acceleration processes, including shock formation, self-generation of magnetic fields by kinetic plasma instabilities, and magnetic field compression and reconnection. How each of these contribute to the observed spectra of cosmic rays is not fully understood, in particular both shock acceleration processes and magnetic reconnection have been proposed. We will review recent results of laboratory astrophysics experiments conducted at high-power, inertial-fusion-class laser facilities, which have uncovered significant results relevant to these processes. Recent experiments have now observed the long-sought Weibel instability between two interpenetrating high temperature plasma plumes, which has been proposed to generate the magnetic field necessary for shock formation in unmagnetized regimes. A second set of experiments has demonstrated magnetized shock formation in pre-magnetized plasmas. Finally, magnetic reconnection has been studied in systems of colliding plasmas using either self-generated magnetic fields or externally applied magnetic fields, and show extremely fast reconnection rates, indicating fast destruction of magnetic energy and further possibilities to accelerate particles. Finally, we highlight kinetic plasma simulations, which have proven to be essential tools in the design and interpretation of these experiments.

  3. Gamma-ray flares in the Crab Nebula: A case of relativistic reconnection?

    SciTech Connect

    Cerutti, B.; Werner, G. R. Uzdensky, D. A.; Begelman, M. C.

    2014-05-15

    The Crab Nebula was formed after the collapse of a massive star about a thousand years ago, leaving behind a pulsar that inflates a bubble of ultra-relativistic electron-positron pairs permeated with magnetic field. The observation of brief but bright flares of energetic gamma rays suggests that pairs are accelerated to PeV energies within a few days; such rapid acceleration cannot be driven by shocks. Here, it is argued that the flares may be the smoking gun of magnetic dissipation in the Nebula. Using 2D and 3D particle-in-cell simulations, it is shown that the observations are consistent with relativistic magnetic reconnection, where pairs are subject to strong radiative cooling. The Crab flares may highlight the importance of relativistic magnetic reconnection in astrophysical sources.

  4. Localized Electron Heating by Strong Guide-Field Magnetic Reconnection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Xuehan; Sugawara, Takumichi; Inomoto, Michiaki; Yamasaki, Kotaro; Ono, Yasushi; UTST Team

    2015-11-01

    Localized electron heating of magnetic reconnection was studied under strong guide-field (typically Bt 15Bp) using two merging spherical tokamak plasmas in Univ. Tokyo Spherical Tokamak (UTST) experiment. Our new slide-type two-dimensional Thomson scattering system documented for the first time the electron heating localized around the X-point. The region of high electron temperature, which is perpendicular to the magnetic field, was found to have a round shape with radius of 2 [cm]. Also, it was localized around the X-point and does not agree with that of energy dissipation term Et .jt . When we include a guide-field effect term Bt / (Bp + αBt) for Et .jt where α =√{ (vin2 +vout2) /v∥2 } , the energy dissipation area becomes localized around the X-point, suggesting that the electrons are accelerated by the reconnection electric field parallel to the magnetic field and thermalized around the X-point. This work was supported by JSPS A3 Foresight Program ``Innovative Tokamak Plasma Startup and Current Drive in Spherical Torus,'' a Grant-in-Aid from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Fellows 15J03758.

  5. Ion Heating by Alfven Waves and Reconnection in NSTX

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fredrickson, E. D.

    2006-04-01

    The evolution of laboratory and astrophysical plasmas depends on the flow of energy between the ``equilibrium'' configuration, waves in the plasma and the thermal plasma. We explore two examples of this energy flow. In the first example, data from NSTX is examined for evidence that CAE in the frequency range from ˜ 0.2 fci to ˜ 1.2 fci excited by super-thermal ions might heat the thermal ions. Theory indicates that only a relatively small portion of the beam power would go into exciting the CAE on NSTX, and observations indicate that the amplitude of these waves, deduced from density fluctuations, is below the stochastic threshold for heating. Another example examines how internal magnetic reconnections can lead to heating of the thermal ions. One model postulates the excitation of a high frequency wave, which then damps on the ions. High frequency waves are indeed seen to follow some NSTX reconnection events. The second invokes direct acceleration of the thermal ions by the induced electric field [P. Helander, L.-G. Eriksson, R.J. Akers, et al.,Phys. Rev. Lett. 89 (2002) 235002-1]. In collaboration with S.S. Medley, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory.

  6. Breakout Reconnection Observed by the TESIS EUV Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reva, A. A.; Ulyanov, A. S.; Shestov, S. V.; Kuzin, S. V.

    2016-01-01

    We present experimental evidence of the coronal mass ejection (CME) breakout reconnection, observed by the TESIS EUV telescope. The telescope could observe solar corona up to 2 R⊙ from the Sun center in the Fe 171 Å line. Starting from 2009 April 8, TESIS observed an active region (AR) that had a quadrupolar structure with an X-point 0.5 R⊙ above photosphere. A magnetic field reconstructed from the Michelson Doppler Imager data also has a multipolar structure with an X-point above the AR. At 21:45 UT on April 9, the loops near the X-point started to move away from each other with a velocity of ≈7 km s-1. At 01:15 UT on April 10, a bright stripe appeared between the loops, and the flux in the GOES 0.5-4 Å channel increased. We interpret the loops’ sideways motion and the bright stripe as evidence of the breakout reconnection. At 01:45 UT, the loops below the X-point started to slowly move up. At 15:10 UT, the CME started to accelerate impulsively, while at the same time a flare arcade formed below the CME. After 15:50 UT, the CME moved with constant velocity. The CME evolution precisely followed the breakout model scenario.

  7. BREAKOUT RECONNECTION OBSERVED BY THE TESIS EUV TELESCOPE

    SciTech Connect

    Reva, A. A.; Ulyanov, A. S.; Shestov, S. V.; Kuzin, S. V.

    2016-01-10

    We present experimental evidence of the coronal mass ejection (CME) breakout reconnection, observed by the TESIS EUV telescope. The telescope could observe solar corona up to 2 R{sub ⊙} from the Sun center in the Fe 171 Å line. Starting from 2009 April 8, TESIS observed an active region (AR) that had a quadrupolar structure with an X-point 0.5 R{sub ⊙} above photosphere. A magnetic field reconstructed from the Michelson Doppler Imager data also has a multipolar structure with an X-point above the AR. At 21:45 UT on April 9, the loops near the X-point started to move away from each other with a velocity of ≈7 km s{sup −1}. At 01:15 UT on April 10, a bright stripe appeared between the loops, and the flux in the GOES 0.5–4 Å channel increased. We interpret the loops’ sideways motion and the bright stripe as evidence of the breakout reconnection. At 01:45 UT, the loops below the X-point started to slowly move up. At 15:10 UT, the CME started to accelerate impulsively, while at the same time a flare arcade formed below the CME. After 15:50 UT, the CME moved with constant velocity. The CME evolution precisely followed the breakout model scenario.

  8. Measurements of Fast Magnetic Reconnection Driven by Relativistic Electrons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raymond, Anthony; McKelvey, Andrew; Zulick, Calvin; Chuanfei, Dong; Maksimchuk, Anatoly; Thomas, Alexander; Yanovsky, Victor; Krushelnick, Karl; Willingale, Louise; Chykov, Vladimir; Nilson, Phil; Chen, Hui; Williams, Gerald; Bhattacharjee, Amitava; Fox, Will

    2015-11-01

    Magnetic reconnection is a process whereby opposing magnetic field lines are forced together and topologically rearrange, resulting in lower magnetic potential energy and in corresponding plasma heating. Such occurrences are ubiquitous in astrophysics as well as appearing in laboratory plasmas such as in ICF in the form of instabilities. We report measurements in the domain of ultra-fast, ultra-intense lasers, in which the mechanism responsible follows from radially expanding surface electrons with v ~ c . Results are compared from two laser facilities (HERCULES and Omega EP), both of which produced two relativistic intensity pulses focused within close proximity onto copper foils. A spherical X-ray crystal was used to image the Kα radiation induced by electron currents, revealing the midplane diffusion region wherein electrons are accelerated into the target by the electric field generated during reconnection. The characteristics of this signal are studied as a function of the focal spot separation, laser energy, and pulse duration. The results are then compared to 3D PIC simulations.

  9. Inferring proximity to the reconnection site via structural changes to the magnetopause caused by asymmetric reconnection.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Argall, M. R.; Chen, L. J.; Torbert, R. B.; Daughton, W. S.; Yoo, J.; Yamada, M.

    2014-12-01

    The mechanisms of field line breaking and magnetic energy dissipation that result in magnetic reconnection have yet to be determined by spacecraft observations. Many parameters have been proposed to locate the reconnection site, but they either fail to identify uniquely the reconnection site or have not been tested for asymmetric reconnection. We demonstrate that the change in magnetopause structure caused by reconnection can be used to locate and estimate proximity to the site of reconnection. Cluster observations of quiet magnetopause crossings, for which no evidence of reconnection is found, show no obvious spatial dependence of the DC electric field, while the plasma density and velocity make the transition from magnetosheath to magnetosphere values simultaneously with the tangential magnetic field (BL) reversal. Conversely, in-situ observations of several active crossings, for which signs of reconnection are evident, show that the density transition and BL reversal can occur simultaneously or be offset from one another by over 100 ion skin depths (λi) (assuming a constant magnetopause velocity), the outflow jet can occur anywhere from the BL reversal to several λi earthward of the density gradient, and the DC electric field changes sign on either side of the density gradient. Laboratory experiments and 2D and 3D particle-in-cell simulations of asymmetric reconnection reveal that the relative transition offsets are due to exhaust crossings at different proximities to the X-line. Only within the thin electron current layer surrounding the X-line do the transitions remain concurrent. We present one reconnection event during which the transitions in plasma density, DC electric field, and BL are simultaneous in two of the four Cluster spacecraft and offset in the other two spacecraft. The multiple satellite encounter allows us to examine spatial features in the region surrounding the X-line.

  10. CHAIN RECONNECTIONS OBSERVED IN SYMPATHETIC ERUPTIONS

    SciTech Connect

    Joshi, Navin Chandra; Magara, Tetsuya; Schmieder, Brigitte; Aulanier, Guillaume; Guo, Yang E-mail: njoshi98@gmail.com

    2016-04-01

    The nature of various plausible causal links between sympathetic events is still a controversial issue. In this work, we present multiwavelength observations of sympathetic eruptions, associated flares, and coronal mass ejections (CMEs) occurring on 2013 November 17 in two close active regions. Two filaments, i.e., F1 and F2, are observed in between the active regions. Successive magnetic reconnections, caused for different reasons (flux cancellation, shear, and expansion) have been identified during the whole event. The first reconnection occurred during the first eruption via flux cancellation between the sheared arcades overlying filament F2, creating a flux rope and leading to the first double-ribbon solar flare. During this phase, we observed the eruption of overlying arcades and coronal loops, which leads to the first CME. The second reconnection is believed to occur between the expanding flux rope of F2 and the overlying arcades of filament F1. We suggest that this reconnection destabilized the equilibrium of filament F1, which further facilitated its eruption. The third stage of reconnection occurred in the wake of the erupting filament F1 between the legs of the overlying arcades. This may create a flux rope and the second double-ribbon flare and a second CME. The fourth reconnection was between the expanding arcades of the erupting filament F1 and the nearby ambient field, which produced the bi-directional plasma flows both upward and downward. Observations and a nonlinear force-free field extrapolation confirm the possibility of reconnection and the causal link between the magnetic systems.

  11. Ion reflection and transmission during reconnection at the earth's subsolar magnetopause

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fuselier, S. A.; Klumpar, D. M.; Shelley, E. G.

    1991-01-01

    Composition measurements in an accelerated flow event at the earth's dayside magnetopause show evidence for reflection and transmission of magnetospheric and magnetosheath ion species. Furthermore, a single velocity transformation approximately tangent to the magnetopause surface orders the individual transmitted and reflected ion distributions on both sides of the magnetopause into field-aligned flow at V(A), the local Alfven speed. These observations provide strong evidence for a kinetic description of magnetic reconnection at the magnetopause.

  12. Unsteady wandering magnetic field lines, turbulence and laboratory flux ropes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Intrator, T.; Sears, J.; Weber, T.; Liu, D.; Pulliam, D.; Lazarian, A.

    2011-12-01

    We describe earth bound laboratory experiment investigations of patchy, unsteady, bursty, patchy magnetic field structures that are unifying features of magnetic reconnection and turbulence in helio, space and astro physics. Macroscopic field lines occupy cross sectional areas, fill up three dimensional (3D) volumes as flux tubes. They contain mass with Newtonian dynamics that follow magneto-hydro-dynamic (MHD) equations of motion. Flux rope geometry can be ubiquitous in laminar reconnection sheet geometries that are themselves unstable to formation of secondary "islands" that in 3D are really flux ropes. Flux ropes are ubiquitous structures on the sun and the rest of the heliosphere. Understanding the dynamics of flux ropes and their mutual interactions offers the key to many important astrophysical phenomena, including magnetic reconnection and turbulence. We describe laboratory investigations on RSX, where 3D interaction of flux ropes can be studied in great detail. We use experimental probes inside the the flux ropes to measure the magnetic and electric fields, current density, density, temperatures, pressure, and electrostatic and vector plasma potentials. Macroscopic magnetic field lines, unsteady wandering characteristics, and dynamic objects with structure down to the dissipation scale length can be traced from data sets in a 3D volume. Computational approaches are finally able to tackle simple 3D systems and we sketch some intriguing simulation results that are consistent with 3D extensions of typical 2D cartoons for magnetic reconnection and turbulence.

  13. Reconnection and Spire Drift in Coronal Jets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Ronald; Sterling, Alphonse; Falconer, David

    2015-04-01

    It is observed that there are two morphologically-different kinds of X-ray/EUV jets in coronal holes: standard jets and blowout jets. In both kinds: (1) in the base of the jet there is closed magnetic field that has one foot in flux of polarity opposite that of the ambient open field of the coronal hole, and (2) in coronal X-ray/EUV images of the jet there is typically a bright nodule at the edge of the base. In the conventional scenario for jets of either kind, the bright nodule is a compact flare arcade, the downward product of interchange reconnection of closed field in the base with impacted ambient open field, and the upper product of this reconnection is the jet-outflow spire. It is also observed that in most jets of either kind the spire drifts sideways away from the bright nodule. We present the observed bright nodule and spire drift in an example standard jet and in two example blowout jets. With cartoons of the magnetic field and its reconnection in jets, we point out: (1) if the bright nodule is a compact flare arcade made by interchange reconnection, then the spire should drift toward the bright nodule, and (2) if the bright nodule is instead a compact flare arcade made, as in a filament-eruption flare, by internal reconnection of the legs of the erupting sheared-field core of a lobe of the closed field in the base, then the spire, made by the interchange reconnection that is driven on the outside of that lobe by the lobe’s internal convulsion, should drift away from the bright nodule. Therefore, from the observation that the spire usually drifts away from the bright nodule, we infer: (1) in X-ray/EUV jets of either kind in coronal holes the interchange reconnection that generates the jet-outflow spire usually does not make the bright nodule; instead, the bright nodule is made by reconnection inside erupting closed field in the base, as in a filament eruption, the eruption being either a confined eruption for a standard jet or a blowout eruption (as

  14. Quantitative analytical model for magnetic reconnection in hall magnetohydrodynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Simakov, Andrei N

    2008-01-01

    Magnetic reconnection is of fundamental importance for laboratory and naturally occurring plasmas. Reconnection usually develops on time scales which are much shorter than those associated with classical collisional dissipation processes, and which are not fully understood. While such dissipation-independent (or 'fast') reconnection rates have been observed in particle and Hall magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) simulations and predicted analytically in electron MHD, a quantitative analytical theory of fast reconnection valid for arbitrary ion inertial lengths d{sub i} has been lacking. Here we propose such a theory without a guide field. The theory describes two-dimensional magnetic field diffusion regions, provides expressions for the reconnection rates, and derives a formal criterion for fast reconnection in terms of dissipation parameters and di. It also demonstrates that both open X-point and elongated diffusion regions allow dissipation-independent reconnection and reveals a possibility of strong dependence of the reconnection rates on d{sub i}.

  15. Magnetic Reconnection in Different Environments: Similarities and Differences

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hesse, Michael; Aunai, Nicolas; Kuznetsova, Masha; Zenitani, Seiji; Birn, Joachim

    2014-01-01

    Depending on the specific situation, magnetic reconnection may involve symmetric or asymmetric inflow regions. Asymmetric reconnection applies, for example, to reconnection at the Earth's magnetopause, whereas reconnection in the nightside magnetotail tends to involve more symmetric geometries. A combination of review and new results pertaining to magnetic reconnection is being presented. The focus is on three aspects: A basic, MHD-based, analysis of the role magnetic reconnection plays in the transport of energy, followed by an analysis of a kinetic model of time dependent reconnection in a symmetric current sheet, similar to what is typically being encountered in the magnetotail of the Earth. The third element is a review of recent results pertaining to the orientation of the reconnection line in asymmetric geometries, which are typical for the magnetopause of the Earth, as well as likely to occur at other planets.

  16. Entropy conservation in simulations of magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Birn, J.; Hesse, M.; Schindler, K.

    2006-09-15

    Entropy and mass conservation are investigated for the dynamic field evolution associated with fast magnetic reconnection, based on the 'Newton Challenge' problem [Birn et al., Geophys. Res. Lett. 32, L06105 (2005)]. In this problem, the formation of a thin current sheet and magnetic reconnection are initiated in a plane Harris-type current sheet by temporally limited, spatially varying, inflow of magnetic flux. Using resistive magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) and particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations, specifically the entropy and mass integrated along the magnetic flux tubes are compared between the simulations. In the MHD simulation these should be exactly conserved quantities, when slippage and Ohmic dissipation are negligible. It is shown that there is very good agreement between the conservation of these quantities in the two simulation approaches, despite the effects of dissipation, provided that the resistivity in the MHD simulation is strongly localized. This demonstrates that dissipation is highly localized in the PIC simulation also, and that heat flux across magnetic flux tubes has negligible effect as well, so that the entropy increase on a full flux tube remains small even during reconnection. The mass conservation also implies that the frozen-in flux condition of ideal MHD is a good integral approximation outside the reconnection site. This result lends support for using the entropy-conserving MHD approach not only before and after reconnection but even as a constraint connecting the two phases.

  17. Fluctuation dynamics in reconnecting current sheets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    von Stechow, Adrian; Grulke, Olaf; Ji, Hantao; Yamada, Masaaki; Klinger, Thomas

    2015-11-01

    During magnetic reconnection, a highly localized current sheet forms at the boundary between opposed magnetic fields. Its steep perpendicular gradients and fast parallel drifts can give rise to a range of instabilities which can contribute to the overall reconnection dynamics. In two complementary laboratory reconnection experiments, MRX (PPPL, Princeton) and VINETA.II (IPP, Greifswald, Germany), magnetic fluctuations are observed within the current sheet. Despite the large differences in geometries (toroidal vs. linear), plasma parameters (high vs. low beta) and magnetic configuration (low vs. high magnetic guide field), similar broadband fluctuation characteristics are observed in both experiments. These are identified as Whistler-like fluctuations in the lower hybrid frequency range that propagate along the current sheet in the electron drift direction. They are intrinsic to the localized current sheet and largely independent of the slower reconnection dynamics. This contribution characterizes these magnetic fluctuations within the wide parameter range accessible by both experiments. Specifically, the fluctuation spectra and wave dispersion are characterized with respect to the magnetic topology and plasma parameters of the reconnecting current sheet.

  18. Magnetic reconnection under anisotropic magnetohydrodynamic approximation

    SciTech Connect

    Hirabayashi, K.; Hoshino, M.

    2013-11-15

    We study the formation of slow-mode shocks in collisionless magnetic reconnection by using one- and two-dimensional collisionless MHD codes based on the double adiabatic approximation and the Landau closure model. We bridge the gap between the Petschek-type MHD reconnection model accompanied by a pair of slow shocks and the observational evidence of the rare occasion of in-situ slow shock observations. Our results showed that once magnetic reconnection takes place, a firehose-sense (p{sub ∥}>p{sub ⊥}) pressure anisotropy arises in the downstream region, and the generated slow shocks are quite weak comparing with those in an isotropic MHD. In spite of the weakness of the shocks, however, the resultant reconnection rate is 10%–30% higher than that in an isotropic case. This result implies that the slow shock does not necessarily play an important role in the energy conversion in the reconnection system and is consistent with the satellite observation in the Earth's magnetosphere.

  19. Current sheets, reconnection and adaptive mesh refinement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marliani, Christiane

    1998-11-01

    Adaptive structured mesh refinement methods have proved to be an appropriate tool for the numerical study of a variety of problems where largely separated length scales are involved, e.g. [R. Grauer, C. Marliani, K. Germaschewski, PRL, 80, 4177, (1998)]. A typical example in plasma physics are the current sheets in magnetohydrodynamic flows. Their dynamics is investigated in the framework of incompressible MHD. We present simulations of the ideal and inviscid dynamics in two and three dimensions. In addition, we show numerical simulations for the resistive case in two dimensions. Specifically, we show simulations for the case of the reconnection.html>doubly periodic coalescence instability. At the onset of the reconnection process the kinetic energy rises and drops rapidly and afterwards settles into an oscillatory phase. The timescale of the magnetic reconnection process is not affected by these fast events but consistent with the Sweet-Parker model of stationary reconnection. Taking into account the electron inertia terms in the generalized Ohm's law the electron skin depth is introduced as an additional parameter. The modified equations allow for magnetic reconnection in the collisionless regime. Current density and vorticity concentrate in extremely long and thin sheets. Their dynamics becomes numerically accessible by means of adaptive mesh refinement.

  20. Turbulence forecasting

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chandler, C. L.

    1987-01-01

    In order to forecast turbulence, one needs to have an understanding of the cause of turbulence. Therefore, an attempt is made to show the atmospheric structure that often results when aircraft encounter moderate or greater turbulence. The analysis is based on thousands of hours of observations of flights over the past 39 years of aviation meteorology.

  1. The Rate of Flux Pile-up Magnetic Reconnection in the Solar Corona

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Litvinenko, Y. E.

    2000-05-01

    The rate of two-dimensional flux pile-up magnetic reconnection is known to be severely limited by gas pressure in a low-beta plasma of the solar corona. For a two-dimensional stagnation point flow with nonzero vorticity, for example, the rate cannot exceed the Sweet-Parker scaling. The limitation should be less restrictive, however, for three-dimensional flux pile-up. This paper examines the maximum rate of three-dimensional pile-up reconnection in the approximation of reduced magnetohydrodynamics (RMHD), which is valid in the solar coronal loops. Gas pressure effects are ignored in RMHD, but a similar limitation on the rate of magnetic merging exists. Both the magnetic energy dissipation rate and the reconnection electric field are shown to increase by several orders of magnitude in RMHD as compared with strictly two-dimensional pile-up. This is enough to explain small solar flares and slow coronal transients with energy release rates of order 1025 - 1026 erg s-1, as well as heating of quiet coronal loops. Notably, the reconnection electric field is several orders of magnitude greater than the Dreicer field, hence it can efficiently accelerate charged particles in flares. This work was supported by NSF grant ATM-9813933.

  2. Electromagnetic energy conversion in downstream fronts from three dimensional kinetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Lapenta, Giovanni; Goldman, Martin; Newman, David; Markidis, Stefano; Divin, Andrey

    2014-05-15

    The electromagnetic energy equation is analyzed term by term in a 3D simulation of kinetic reconnection previously reported by Vapirev et al. [J. Geophys. Res.: Space Phys. 118, 1435 (2013)]. The evolution presents the usual 2D-like topological structures caused by an initial perturbation independent of the third dimension. However, downstream of the reconnection site, where the jetting plasma encounters the yet unperturbed pre-existing plasma, a downstream front is formed and made unstable by the strong density gradient and the unfavorable local acceleration field. The energy exchange between plasma and fields is most intense at the instability, reaching several pW/m{sup 3}, alternating between load (energy going from fields to particles) and generator (energy going from particles to fields) regions. Energy exchange is instead purely that of a load at the reconnection site itself in a region focused around the x-line and elongated along the separatrix surfaces. Poynting fluxes are generated at all energy exchange regions and travel away from the reconnection site transporting an energy signal of the order of about S≈10{sup −3}W/m{sup 2}.

  3. Distinguishing between pulsed and continuous reconnection at the dayside magnetopause

    PubMed Central

    Onsager, T. G.; Petrinec, S. M.; Fuselier, S. A.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Magnetic reconnection has been established as the dominant mechanism by which magnetic fields in different regions change topology to create open magnetic field lines that allow energy and momentum to flow into the magnetosphere. One of the persistent problems of magnetic reconnection is the question of whether the process is continuous or intermittent and what input condition(s) might favor one type of reconnection over the other. Observations from imagers that record FUV emissions caused by precipitating cusp ions demonstrate the global nature of magnetic reconnection. Those images show continuous ionospheric emissions even during changing interplanetary magnetic field conditions. On the other hand, in situ observations from polar‐orbiting satellites show distinctive cusp structures in flux distributions of precipitating ions, which are interpreted as the telltale signature of intermittent reconnection. This study uses a modification of the low‐velocity cutoff method, which was previously successfully used to determine the location of the reconnection site, to calculate for the cusp ion distributions the “time since reconnection occurred.” The “time since reconnection” is used to determine the “reconnection time” for the cusp magnetic field lines where these distributions have been observed. The profile of the reconnection time, either continuous or stepped, is a direct measurement of the nature of magnetic reconnection at the reconnection site. This paper will discuss a continuous and pulsed reconnection event from the Polar spacecraft to illustrate the methodology. PMID:27656333

  4. Studies of Particle Acceleration, Transport and Radiation in Impulsive Phase of Solar Flares

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Petrosian, Vahe

    2005-01-01

    Solar activity and its most prominent aspect, the solar flares, have considerable influence on terrestrial and space weather. Solar flares also provide a suitable laboratory for the investigation of many plasma and high energy processes important in the magnetosphere of the Earth and many other space and astrophysical situations. Hence, progress in understanding of flares will have considerable scientific and societal impact. The primary goal of this grant is the understanding of two of the most important problems of solar flare physics, namely the determination of the energy release mechanism and how this energy accelerates particles. This is done through comparison of the observations with theoretical models, starting from observations and gradually proceeding to theoretically more complex situations as the lower foundations of our understanding are secured. It is generally agreed that the source of the flare energy is the annihilation of magnetic fields by the reconnection process. Exactly how this energy is released or how it is dissipated remains controversial. Moreover, the exact mechanism of the acceleration of the particles is still a matter of debate. Data from many spacecrafts and ground based instruments obtained over the past decades have given us some clues. Theoretical analyses of these data have led to the standard thick target model (STT) where most of the released energy goes into an (assumed) power law spectrum of accelerated particles, and where all the observed radiations are the consequence of the interaction of these particles with the flare plasma. However, some theoretical arguments, and more importantly some new observations, have led us to believe that the above picture is not complete. It appears that plasma turbulence plays a more prominent role than suspected previously, and that it is the most likely agent for accelerating particles. The model we have developed is based on production of a high level of plasma waves and turbulence in

  5. Nonlinear regimes of forced magnetic reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Vekstein, G.; Kusano, K.

    2015-09-15

    This letter presents a self-consistent description of nonlinear forced magnetic reconnection in Taylor's model of this process. If external boundary perturbation is strong enough, nonlinearity in the current sheet evolution becomes important before resistive effects come into play. This terminates the current sheet shrinking that takes place at the linear stage and brings about its nonlinear equilibrium with a finite thickness. Then, in theory, this equilibrium is destroyed by a finite plasma resistivity during the skin-time, and further reconnection proceeds in the Rutherford regime. However, realization of such a scenario is unlikely because of the plasmoid instability, which is fast enough to develop before the transition to the Rutherford phase occurs. The suggested analytical theory is entirely different from all previous studies and provides proper interpretation of the presently available numerical simulations of nonlinear forced magnetic reconnection.

  6. Formation of Plasmoid Chains in Magnetic Reconnection

    SciTech Connect

    Samtaney, R.; Loureiro, N. F.; Uzdensky, D. A.; Schekochihin, A. A.; Cowley, S. C.

    2009-09-09

    A detailed numerical study of magnetic reconnection in resistive MHD for very large, previously inaccessible, Lundquist numbers (104 ≤ S ≤ 108) is reported. Large-aspect-ratio Sweet-Parker current sheets are shown to be unstable to super-Alfvenically fast formation of plasmoid (magnetic-island) chains. The plasmoid number scales as S3/8 and the instability growth rate in the linear stage as S1/4, in agreement with the theory by Loureiro et al. [Phys. Plasmas 14, 100703 (2007)]. In the nonlinear regime, plasmoids continue to grow faster than they are ejected and completely disrupt the reconnection layer. These results suggest that high-Lundquist-number reconnection is inherently time-dependent and hence call for a substantial revision of the standard Sweet-Parker quasistationary picture for S>104.

  7. Real time mitigation of atmospheric turbulence in long distance imaging using the lucky region fusion algorithm with FPGA and GPU hardware acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, Christopher Robert

    "Lucky-region" fusion (LRF) is a synthetic imaging technique that has proven successful in enhancing the quality of images distorted by atmospheric turbulence. The LRF algorithm selects sharp regions of an image obtained from a series of short exposure frames, and fuses the sharp regions into a final, improved image. In previous research, the LRF algorithm had been implemented on a PC using the C programming language. However, the PC did not have sufficient sequential processing power to handle real-time extraction, processing and reduction required when the LRF algorithm was applied to real-time video from fast, high-resolution image sensors. This thesis describes two hardware implementations of the LRF algorithm to achieve real-time image processing. The first was created with a VIRTEX-7 field programmable gate array (FPGA). The other developed using the graphics processing unit (GPU) of a NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690 video card. The novelty in the FPGA approach is the creation of a "black box" LRF video processing system with a general camera link input, a user controller interface, and a camera link video output. We also describe a custom hardware simulation environment we have built to test the FPGA LRF implementation. The advantage of the GPU approach is significantly improved development time, integration of image stabilization into the system, and comparable atmospheric turbulence mitigation.

  8. On the value of the reconnection rate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Comisso, L.; Bhattacharjee, A.

    2016-12-01

    Numerical simulations have consistently shown that the reconnection rate in certain collisionless regimes can be fast, of the order of ABu$ , where A$ and u$ are the Alfvén speed and the reconnecting magnetic field upstream of the ion diffusion region. This particular value has been reported in myriad numerical simulations under disparate conditions. However, despite decades of research, the reasons underpinning this specific value remain mysterious. Here, we present an overview of this problem and discuss the conditions under which the `0.1 value' is attained. Furthermore, we explain why this problem should be interpreted in terms of the ion diffusion region length.

  9. Forced reconnection in the Hall limit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huba, J. D.

    2006-12-01

    We present new numerical results of the dynamics of forced magnetic reconnection in the Hall limit using the NRL Hall MHD code VooDoo. The system is forced by imposing inflow boundary conditions on the plasma density and velocity, and the magnetic field. A magnetic field of opposite polarity is injected from opposite boundaries. The inflow velocity is spatially uniform but the density profile is spatially nonuniform which allows an X-line to develop and magnetic reconnection to proceed. We present simulation results for various inflow conditions in both 2D and 3D geometries. We apply our results to laboratory and space plasma processes. Research supported by ONR and NASA.

  10. Forced Reconnection in the Hall Limit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huba, J.

    2006-10-01

    We present new numerical results of the dynamics of forced magnetic reconnection in the Hall limit using the NRL Hall MHD code VooDoo. The system is forced by imposing inflow boundary conditions on the plasma density and velocity, and the magnetic field. A magnetic field of opposite polarity is injected from opposite boundaries. The inflow velocity is spatially uniform but the density profile is spatially nonuniform which allows an X-line to develop and magnetic reconnection to proceed. We present simulation results for various inflow conditions in both 2D and 3D geometries. We apply our results to laboratory and space plasma processes.

  11. Magnetic reconnection in a magnetohydrodynamic plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Kulsrud, R.M.

    1998-05-01

    Magnetic reconnection is important because of its connection with the topology of field lines. In general, a change in topology means a change of equilibrium, and a release of energy, such as occurs in solar flares. In the context of the solar flare two models for magnetic reconnection, the Sweet{endash}Parker and the Petschek mechanism are presented. The pros and cons of these two models are presented. The role of anomalous resistivity in the Sweet{endash}Parker model is discussed. The bearing of a laboratory experiment and a boundary layer analysis of the problem are described. {copyright} {ital 1998 American Institute of Physics.}

  12. Disc formation in turbulent cloud cores: is magnetic flux loss necessary to stop the magnetic braking catastrophe or not?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2013-03-01

    Recent numerical analysis of