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Title: Diffusion effect in MHD turbulence

Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 5144476
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Sov. Phys. - Dokl. (Engl. Transl.); (United States); Journal Volume: 19:6
Country of Publication:
United States

Citation Formats

Gurfink, M.M. Diffusion effect in MHD turbulence. United States: N. p., 1974. Web.
Gurfink, M.M. Diffusion effect in MHD turbulence. United States.
Gurfink, M.M. Sun . "Diffusion effect in MHD turbulence". United States. doi:.
title = {Diffusion effect in MHD turbulence},
author = {Gurfink, M.M.},
abstractNote = {None},
doi = {},
journal = {Sov. Phys. - Dokl. (Engl. Transl.); (United States)},
number = ,
volume = 19:6,
place = {United States},
year = {Sun Dec 01 00:00:00 EST 1974},
month = {Sun Dec 01 00:00:00 EST 1974}
  • Ambipolar diffusion (AD) is important in redistributing magnetic flux and in damping Alfven waves in molecular clouds. The importance of AD on a length scale l is governed by the AD Reynolds number, R {sub AD} = l/l{sub AD}, where l{sub AD} is the characteristic length scale for AD. The logarithmic mean of the AD Reynolds number in a sample of 15 molecular clumps with measured magnetic fields is 17, comparable to the theoretically expected value. We identify several regimes of AD in a turbulent medium, depending on the ratio of the flow time to collision times between ions andmore » neutrals; the clumps observed by Crutcher in 1999 are all in the standard regime of AD, in which the neutrals and ions are coupled over a flow time. We have carried out two-fluid simulations of AD in isothermal, turbulent boxes for a range of values of R {sub AD}. The mean Mach numbers were fixed at M=3 and M{sub A}=0.67; self-gravity was not included. We study the properties of overdensities-i.e., clumps-in the simulation and show that the slope of the higher-mass portion of the clump mass spectrum increases as R {sub AD} decreases, which is qualitatively consistent with Padoan et al.'s finding that the mass spectrum in hydrodynamic turbulence is significantly steeper than in ideal MHD turbulence. For a value of R {sub AD} similar to the observed value, we find a slope that is consistent with that of the high-mass end of the initial mass function (IMF) for stars. However, the value we find for the spectral index in our ideal MHD simulation differs from theirs, presumably because our simulations have different initial conditions. This suggests that the mass spectrum of the clumps in the Padoan et al. turbulent fragmentation model for the IMF depends on the environment, which would conflict with evidence for a universal IMF. In addition, we give a general discussion of how the results of simulations of magnetized, turbulent, isothermal boxes can be scaled to physical systems. Each physical process that is introduced into the simulation, such as AD, introduces a dimensionless parameter, such as R {sub AD}, which must be fixed for the simulation, thereby reducing the number of scaling parameters by one. We show that the importance of self-gravity is fixed in any simulation of AD; it is not possible to carry out a simulation in which self-gravity and AD are varied independently unless the ionization is a free parameter. We show that our simulations apply to small regions in molecular clouds, generally with l{sub 0} {approx}< 0.4 pc and M {approx}< 25 M {sub sun}. A general discussion of the scaling relations for magnetized, isothermal, turbulent boxes, including self-gravitating systems, is given in the appendix.« less
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  • We investigate the role of three-point decorrelation due to Alfven wave propagation in three-dimensional incompressible homogeneous MHD turbulence. By comparing numerical simulations with theoretical expectations, we have studied how this effect influences the decay of turbulent energy caused by both an external mean magnetic field and the fluctuating turbulent field. Decay is initially suppressed by a mean magnetic field, as expected, but the effect soon saturates. The decay rate does not scale with mean magnetic field for higher values. The disagreement with theoretical predictions can be accounted for by anisotropic spectral transfer. Thus, phenomenological models for energy decay that includemore » decorrelation due to Alfvenic propagation are not substantiated. This work complements our detailed study of various models of energy decay in homogeneous MHD [Hossain et al., 1995].« less