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Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc. 368, 293304 (2006) doi:10.1111/j.1365-2966.2006.10103.x Regular and chaotic dynamics in 3D reconnecting current sheets
 

Summary: Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc. 368, 293304 (2006) doi:10.1111/j.1365-2966.2006.10103.x
Regular and chaotic dynamics in 3D reconnecting current sheets
C. Gontikakis,1
C. Efthymiopoulos1
and A. Anastasiadis2
1Academy of Athens, Research Centre of Astronomy and Applied Mathematics, Soranou Efessiou 4, GR-11527 Athens, Greece
2National Observatory of Athens, Institute for Space Applications and Remote Sensing GR-15236, Penteli, Greece
Accepted 2006 January 20. Received 2006 January 13; in original form 2005 December 13
ABSTRACT
We consider the possibility of particles being injected at the interior of a reconnecting current
sheet (RCS), and study their orbits by dynamical systems methods. As an example we consider
orbits in a 3D Harris type RCS. We find that, despite the presence of a strong electric field, a
`mirror' trapping effect persists, to a certain extent, for orbits with appropriate initial conditions
within the sheet. The mirror effect is stronger for electrons than for protons. In summary, three
types of orbits are distinguished: (i) chaotic orbits leading to escape by stochastic acceleration,
(ii) regular orbits leading to escape along the field lines of the reconnecting magnetic compo-
nent, and (iii) mirror-type regular orbits that are trapped in the sheet, making mirror oscillations.
Dynamically, the latter orbits lie on a set of invariant KAM tori that occupy a considerable
amount of the phase space of the motion of the particles. We also observe the phenomenon
of `stickiness', namely chaotic orbits that remain trapped in the sheet for a considerable time.

  

Source: Anastasiadis, Anastasios - Institute for Space Applications and Remote Sensing, National Observatory of Athens

 

Collections: Physics