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Title: Ion heating and magnetic flux pile-up in a magnetic reconnection experiment with super-Alfvénic plasma inflows

Abstract

This work presents a magnetic reconnection experiment in which the kinetic, magnetic and thermal properties of the plasma each play an important role in the overall energy balance and structure of the generated reconnection layer. Magnetic reconnection occurs during the interaction of continuous and steady flows of super-Alfvénic, magnetized, aluminum plasma, which collide in a geometry with two-dimensional symmetry, producing a stable and long-lasting reconnection layer. Optical Thomson scattering measurements show that when the layer forms, ions inside the layer are more strongly heated than electrons, reaching temperatures of T i~$$ \overline{Z}\ $$T e≳300 eV – much greater than can be expected from strong shock and viscous heating alone. Later in time, as the plasma density in the layer increases, the electron and ion temperatures are found to equilibrate, and a constant plasma temperature is achieved through a balance of the heating mechanisms and radiative losses of the plasma. Conclusively, measurements from Faraday rotation polarimetry also indicate the presence of significant magnetic field pile-up occurring at the boundary of the reconnection region, which is consistent with the super-Alfvénic velocity of the inflows

Authors:
 [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [2]; ORCiD logo [3];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [4];  [5];  [1];  [1]; ORCiD logo [1]
  1. Imperial College, London (United Kingdom)
  2. Sorbonne Univ., Paris (France)
  3. Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)
  4. West Virginia Univ., Morgantown, WV (United States)
  5. Northwest Inst. of Nuclear Technology, Xi'an (China)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Dept. of Energy, Washington, D.C. (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), Office of Defense Programs (DP) (NA-10); USDOE Office of Legacy Management (LM), Office of Site Operations (LM-20)
OSTI Identifier:
1499656
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1432579
Grant/Contract Number:  
NA0003764; F03-02NA00057; NA-0003764; SC-0001063
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physics of Plasmas
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 25; Journal Issue: 4; 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

Suttle, L. G., Hare, J. D., Lebedev, S. V., Ciardi, A., Loureiro, N. F., Burdiak, G. C., Chittenden, J. P., Clayson, T., Halliday, J. W. D., Niasse, N., Russell, D., Suzuki-Vidal, F., Tubman, E., Lane, T., Ma, J., Robinson, T., Smith, R. A., and Stuart, N.. Ion heating and magnetic flux pile-up in a magnetic reconnection experiment with super-Alfvénic plasma inflows. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.1063/1.5023664.
Suttle, L. G., Hare, J. D., Lebedev, S. V., Ciardi, A., Loureiro, N. F., Burdiak, G. C., Chittenden, J. P., Clayson, T., Halliday, J. W. D., Niasse, N., Russell, D., Suzuki-Vidal, F., Tubman, E., Lane, T., Ma, J., Robinson, T., Smith, R. A., & Stuart, N.. Ion heating and magnetic flux pile-up in a magnetic reconnection experiment with super-Alfvénic plasma inflows. United States. doi:10.1063/1.5023664.
Suttle, L. G., Hare, J. D., Lebedev, S. V., Ciardi, A., Loureiro, N. F., Burdiak, G. C., Chittenden, J. P., Clayson, T., Halliday, J. W. D., Niasse, N., Russell, D., Suzuki-Vidal, F., Tubman, E., Lane, T., Ma, J., Robinson, T., Smith, R. A., and Stuart, N.. Tue . "Ion heating and magnetic flux pile-up in a magnetic reconnection experiment with super-Alfvénic plasma inflows". United States. doi:10.1063/1.5023664. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1499656.
@article{osti_1499656,
title = {Ion heating and magnetic flux pile-up in a magnetic reconnection experiment with super-Alfvénic plasma inflows},
author = {Suttle, L. G. and Hare, J. D. and Lebedev, S. V. and Ciardi, A. and Loureiro, N. F. and Burdiak, G. C. and Chittenden, J. P. and Clayson, T. and Halliday, J. W. D. and Niasse, N. and Russell, D. and Suzuki-Vidal, F. and Tubman, E. and Lane, T. and Ma, J. and Robinson, T. and Smith, R. A. and Stuart, N.},
abstractNote = {This work presents a magnetic reconnection experiment in which the kinetic, magnetic and thermal properties of the plasma each play an important role in the overall energy balance and structure of the generated reconnection layer. Magnetic reconnection occurs during the interaction of continuous and steady flows of super-Alfvénic, magnetized, aluminum plasma, which collide in a geometry with two-dimensional symmetry, producing a stable and long-lasting reconnection layer. Optical Thomson scattering measurements show that when the layer forms, ions inside the layer are more strongly heated than electrons, reaching temperatures of Ti~$ \overline{Z}\ $Te≳300 eV – much greater than can be expected from strong shock and viscous heating alone. Later in time, as the plasma density in the layer increases, the electron and ion temperatures are found to equilibrate, and a constant plasma temperature is achieved through a balance of the heating mechanisms and radiative losses of the plasma. Conclusively, measurements from Faraday rotation polarimetry also indicate the presence of significant magnetic field pile-up occurring at the boundary of the reconnection region, which is consistent with the super-Alfvénic velocity of the inflows},
doi = {10.1063/1.5023664},
journal = {Physics of Plasmas},
issn = {1070-664X},
number = 4,
volume = 25,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {4}
}

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