Magnetic field amplification and electron acceleration to near-energy equipartition by a mildly relativistic quasi-parallel plasma protoshock

Gareth C. Murphy, Mark E. Dieckmann, Luke O C Drury

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review

Abstract

In this work we have performed a simulation of a plasma collision along a quasi-parallel magnetic field. The density ratio is 10. The aim was to understand and probe the mechanisms whereby electrons are accelerated and magnetic field is amplified. Our main conclusion is quasi-parallel plasma collisions can accelerate electrons to near energy-equipartition with ions. We also find that the magnetic field is strongly amplified. Finally we find that a stable vortex structure is found for magnetic field generated in vortices. Such current vortices may scale up to MHD size scales. We find evidence of a feedback process, initiated by the growth of the magnetic field. This field, in combination with an electric field component generated by charged separation of ions and electrons, triggers an accelerated electron current, which amplifies the field. The process continues until the electrons are near ion energies, at which point they can no longer be accelerated.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 37th EPS Conference on Plasma Physics
Publication date2010
Pages217-220
ISBN (Print)9781622763313
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes
Event37th EPS Conference on Plasma Physics - Dublin, Ireland
Duration: 21 Jun 201025 Jun 2010
Conference number: 37
http://www.eps2010.com/

Conference

Conference37th EPS Conference on Plasma Physics
Number37
Country/TerritoryIreland
CityDublin
Period21/06/201025/06/2010
Internet address

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