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Title: Turbulent heating due to magnetic reconnection

Abstract

Dissipation of plasma turbulent energy is a phenomenon having significant implications for the heating of the solar corona and solar wind. While processes involving linear wave damping, stochastic heating, and reconnection have been postulated as contributors to heating mechanisms, the relative role that they play is not currently understood. In this manuscript, we establish a theoretical framework for applying reconnection heating predictions to turbulent systems. Kinetic particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations are used to study heating due to reconnection, and these results are then adapted to a turbulent medium. First, the factors controlling the heating of plasmas in reconnection exhausts are examined using laminar reconnection simulations; predictions for heating are determined which require only the plasma conditions just upstream of the reconnection diffusion region as input. The laminar predictions are then applied to PIC simulations of turbulence. Key assumptions are: (1) the plasma conditions just upstream of the diffusion region are consistent with Kolmogorov scaling of turbulent fluctuations at the ion inertial scale and (2) the statistics of the numbers of reconnecting x-lines do not vary significantly between the various turbulent simulations. We find that the reconnection theory predicts quite well the scaling of the ratio of ion to electron heating, inmore » which the statistics of the turbulent reconnection sites are expected to roughly cancel. Separate ion and electron heating rates scale differently from the theory, however. This suggests that the statistics of the turbulent reconnection (e.g., number of x-lines, percentage of x-lines reconnecting) is playing an important role in determining the ion and electron heating.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [1];  [2];  [3]
  1. Univ. of Delaware, Newark, DE (United States)
  2. South Univ. of Science and Technology of China, Shenzhen (China)
  3. Queen's Univ., Belfast, Northern Ireland (United Kingdom)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1497875
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physics of Plasmas
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 25; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 1070-664X
Publisher:
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY

Citation Formats

Shay, M. A., Haggerty, C. C., Matthaeus, W. H., Parashar, T. N., Wan, M., and Wu, P. Turbulent heating due to magnetic reconnection. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.1063/1.4993423.
Shay, M. A., Haggerty, C. C., Matthaeus, W. H., Parashar, T. N., Wan, M., & Wu, P. Turbulent heating due to magnetic reconnection. United States. doi:10.1063/1.4993423.
Shay, M. A., Haggerty, C. C., Matthaeus, W. H., Parashar, T. N., Wan, M., and Wu, P. Tue . "Turbulent heating due to magnetic reconnection". United States. doi:10.1063/1.4993423. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1497875.
@article{osti_1497875,
title = {Turbulent heating due to magnetic reconnection},
author = {Shay, M. A. and Haggerty, C. C. and Matthaeus, W. H. and Parashar, T. N. and Wan, M. and Wu, P.},
abstractNote = {Dissipation of plasma turbulent energy is a phenomenon having significant implications for the heating of the solar corona and solar wind. While processes involving linear wave damping, stochastic heating, and reconnection have been postulated as contributors to heating mechanisms, the relative role that they play is not currently understood. In this manuscript, we establish a theoretical framework for applying reconnection heating predictions to turbulent systems. Kinetic particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations are used to study heating due to reconnection, and these results are then adapted to a turbulent medium. First, the factors controlling the heating of plasmas in reconnection exhausts are examined using laminar reconnection simulations; predictions for heating are determined which require only the plasma conditions just upstream of the reconnection diffusion region as input. The laminar predictions are then applied to PIC simulations of turbulence. Key assumptions are: (1) the plasma conditions just upstream of the diffusion region are consistent with Kolmogorov scaling of turbulent fluctuations at the ion inertial scale and (2) the statistics of the numbers of reconnecting x-lines do not vary significantly between the various turbulent simulations. We find that the reconnection theory predicts quite well the scaling of the ratio of ion to electron heating, in which the statistics of the turbulent reconnection sites are expected to roughly cancel. Separate ion and electron heating rates scale differently from the theory, however. This suggests that the statistics of the turbulent reconnection (e.g., number of x-lines, percentage of x-lines reconnecting) is playing an important role in determining the ion and electron heating.},
doi = {10.1063/1.4993423},
journal = {Physics of Plasmas},
issn = {1070-664X},
number = 1,
volume = 25,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {1}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
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Cited by: 7 works
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Figures / Tables:

Table I Table I: Initial inflow parameters for the laminar reconnection simulations.

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    Figures/Tables have been extracted from DOE-funded journal article accepted manuscripts.