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Title: 3D electrostatic gyrokinetic electron and fully kinetic ion simulation of lower-hybrid drift instability of Harris current sheet

Abstract

The eigenmode stability properties of three-dimensional lower-hybrid-drift-instabilities (LHDI) in a Harris current sheet with a small but finite guide magnetic field have been systematically studied by employing the gyrokinetic electron and fully kinetic ion (GeFi) particle-in-cell (PIC) simulation model with a realistic ion-to-electron mass ratio m i/m e. In contrast to the fully kinetic PIC simulation scheme, the fast electron cyclotron motion and plasma oscillations are systematically removed in the GeFi model, and hence one can employ the realistic m i/m e. The GeFi simulations are benchmarked against and show excellent agreement with both the fully kinetic PIC simulation and the analytical eigenmode theory. Our studies indicate that, for small wavenumbers, ky, along the current direction, the most unstable eigenmodes are peaked at the location where $$\vec{k}$$• $$\vec{B}$$ =0, consistent with previous analytical and simulation studies. Here, $$\vec{B}$$ is the equilibrium magnetic field and $$\vec{k}$$ is the wavevector perpendicular to the nonuniformity direction. As ky increases, however, the most unstable eigenmodes are found to be peaked at $$\vec{k}$$ •$$\vec{B}$$ ≠0. Additionally, the simulation results indicate that varying m i/m e, the current sheet width, and the guide magnetic field can affect the stability of LHDI. Simulations with the varying mass ratio confirm the lower hybrid frequency and wave number scalings.

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [1];  [2];  [3]
  1. Auburn Univ., AL (United States). Dept. of Physics
  2. Univ. of California, Irvine, CA (United States). Dept. of Physics and Astronomy; Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
  3. Univ. of California, Irvine, CA (United States). Dept. of Physics and Astronomy; Zhejiang Univ., Hangzhou (China). Institute for Fusion Theory and Simulation
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1305900
Report Number(s):
LLNL-JRNL-698885
Journal ID: ISSN 1070-664X; PHPAEN
Grant/Contract Number:
AC52-07NA27344; SC0010486
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physics of Plasmas
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 23; Journal Issue: 7; Journal ID: ISSN 1070-664X
Publisher:
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION; normal modes; magnetic fields; electrostatics; magnetic reconnection; particle-in-cell method

Citation Formats

Wang, Zhenyu, Lin, Yu, Wang, Xueyi, Tummel, Kurt, and Chen, Liu. 3D electrostatic gyrokinetic electron and fully kinetic ion simulation of lower-hybrid drift instability of Harris current sheet. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.1063/1.4954830.
Wang, Zhenyu, Lin, Yu, Wang, Xueyi, Tummel, Kurt, & Chen, Liu. 3D electrostatic gyrokinetic electron and fully kinetic ion simulation of lower-hybrid drift instability of Harris current sheet. United States. doi:10.1063/1.4954830.
Wang, Zhenyu, Lin, Yu, Wang, Xueyi, Tummel, Kurt, and Chen, Liu. 2016. "3D electrostatic gyrokinetic electron and fully kinetic ion simulation of lower-hybrid drift instability of Harris current sheet". United States. doi:10.1063/1.4954830. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1305900.
@article{osti_1305900,
title = {3D electrostatic gyrokinetic electron and fully kinetic ion simulation of lower-hybrid drift instability of Harris current sheet},
author = {Wang, Zhenyu and Lin, Yu and Wang, Xueyi and Tummel, Kurt and Chen, Liu},
abstractNote = {The eigenmode stability properties of three-dimensional lower-hybrid-drift-instabilities (LHDI) in a Harris current sheet with a small but finite guide magnetic field have been systematically studied by employing the gyrokinetic electron and fully kinetic ion (GeFi) particle-in-cell (PIC) simulation model with a realistic ion-to-electron mass ratio mi/me. In contrast to the fully kinetic PIC simulation scheme, the fast electron cyclotron motion and plasma oscillations are systematically removed in the GeFi model, and hence one can employ the realistic mi/me. The GeFi simulations are benchmarked against and show excellent agreement with both the fully kinetic PIC simulation and the analytical eigenmode theory. Our studies indicate that, for small wavenumbers, ky, along the current direction, the most unstable eigenmodes are peaked at the location where $\vec{k}$• $\vec{B}$ =0, consistent with previous analytical and simulation studies. Here, $\vec{B}$ is the equilibrium magnetic field and $\vec{k}$ is the wavevector perpendicular to the nonuniformity direction. As ky increases, however, the most unstable eigenmodes are found to be peaked at $\vec{k}$ •$\vec{B}$ ≠0. Additionally, the simulation results indicate that varying mi/me, the current sheet width, and the guide magnetic field can affect the stability of LHDI. Simulations with the varying mass ratio confirm the lower hybrid frequency and wave number scalings.},
doi = {10.1063/1.4954830},
journal = {Physics of Plasmas},
number = 7,
volume = 23,
place = {United States},
year = 2016,
month = 7
}

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  • A kinetic electrostatic eigenvalue equation for the lower-hybrid drift instability (LHDI) in a thin Harris current sheet with a guide field is derived based on the gyrokinetic electron and fully kinetic ion(GeFi) description. Three-dimensional nonlocal analyses are carried out to investigate the influence of a guide field on the stabilization of the LHDI by finite parallel wavenumber, k{sub ∥}. Detailed stability properties are first analyzed locally, and then as a nonlocal eigenvalue problem. Our results indicate that at large equilibrium drift velocities, the LHDI is further destabilized by finite k{sub ∥} in the short-wavelength domain. This is demonstrated in amore » local stability analysis and confirmed by the peak in the eigenfunction amplitude. We find the most unstable modes localized at the current sheet edges, and our results agree well with simulations employing the GeFi code developed by Lin et al. [Plasma Phys. Controlled Fusion 47, 657 (2005); Plasma Phys. Controlled Fusion 53, 054013 (2011)].« less
  • The stability of a thin current sheet with a finite guide field is investigated in the weak guide-field limit by means of linear theory and simulation. The emphasis is placed on the lower-hybrid drift instability (LHDI) propagating along the current flow direction. Linear theory is compared against the two-dimensional linear simulation based on the gyrokinetic electron/fully kinetic ion code. LHDI is a flute mode characterized by k{center_dot}B{sub total}=0; hence, it is stabilized by a finite guide field if one is confined to k vector strictly parallel to the cross-field current. Comparison of the theory and simulation shows qualitatively good agreement.
  • The lower-hybrid drift instability (LHDI) in a thin current sheet in the intermediate-wavelength (k{sub y}{radical}({rho}{sub i}{rho}{sub e}){approx}1, where k{sub y}, {rho}{sub e}, and {rho}{sub i} are the wave vector and the electron and ion gyroradii, respectively) regime for particles with {kappa} velocity distribution is studied. The latter is more suitable for describing nonthermal distributions with an enhanced high-energy tail and includes the Maxwellian as a limiting case. It is shown that linear electromagnetic LHDI can be excited near the center of the current sheet. The growth rate decreases, but the electromagnetic component of the LHD mode increases with increase inmore » hot particles.« less
  • By employing nonlocal two-fluid analysis, a class of obliquely propagating current sheet drift instabilities with frequency in the lower-hybrid frequency range is investigated. A series of unstable modes with multiple eigenstates are found by numerical simulation after electrostatic approximation. It is found that the growth rate of the unstable modes, whose eigenfunctions are localized at the current sheet edge, increases as the propagation more oblique. However, as the wave vector attains more and more field-aligned components, the maximum growth rate suffers an acute drop after a certain critical angle, beyond which it finally diminishes. On the other hand, the growthmore » rate associated with modes located near the center of the current sheet is found to be less sensitive to the increase in propagation angle, although it does undergo a gradual decrease until it is stabilized when the mode becomes near-field aligned.« less