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Title: Laboratory evidence of dynamo amplification of magnetic fields in a turbulent plasma

Magnetic fields are ubiquitous in the Universe. The energy density of these fields is typically comparable to the energy density of the fluid motions of the plasma in which they are embedded, making magnetic fields essential players in the dynamics of the luminous matter. The standard theoretical model for the origin of these strong magnetic fields is through the amplification of tiny seed fields via turbulent dynamo to the level consistent with current observations. However, experimental demonstration of the turbulent dynamo mechanism has remained elusive, since it requires plasma conditions that are extremely hard to re-create in terrestrial laboratories. Here in this paper, we demonstrate, using laser-produced colliding plasma flows, that turbulence is indeed capable of rapidly amplifying seed fields to near equipartition with the turbulent fluid motions. These results support the notion that turbulent dynamo is a viable mechanism responsible for the observed present-day magnetization.
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  1. Univ. of Oxford (United Kingdom). Dept. of Physics; Univ. of Chicago, IL (United States). Dept. of Astronomy and Astrophysics
  2. Univ. of Oxford (United Kingdom). Dept. of Physics
  3. Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), Oxford (United Kingdom). Rutherford Appleton Lab. (RAL); Univ. of Strathclyde, Glasgow (United Kingdom). Dept. of Physics
  4. Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA), Arpajon (France). Dept. of the Military Applications (DAM)
  5. Univ. of Chicago, IL (United States). Dept. of Astronomy and Astrophysics
  6. Max Planck Inst. for Astrophysics, Garching (Germany)
  7. Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
  8. SLAC National Accelerator Lab., Menlo Park, CA (United States)
  9. Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States). Physics Dept.
  10. AWE, Aldermaston, Reading, West Berkshire (United Kingdom)
  11. Univ. of Rochester, NY (United States). Lab. for Laser Energetics
  12. Ecole Polytechnique, Palaiseau (France). Laboratoire pour l'Utilisation des Lasers Intenses (LULI)
  13. Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)
  14. Ulsan National Inst. of Science and Technology (UNIST), Ulsan (Korea). Dept. of Physics
  15. Queens Univ., Belfast (United Kingdom). School of Mathematics and Physics
  16. Federal Inst. of Technology, Zurich (Switzerland). Dept. of Physics
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
AC02-76SF00515; B591485; NA0002724; SC0016566; NA0001944; NA0003539; PHY-1619573; AC02-06CH11357; EP/M022331/1; EP/N014472/1
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Nature Communications
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 9; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 2041-1723
Nature Publishing Group
Research Org:
SLAC National Accelerator Lab., Menlo Park, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE; European Union (EU); National Science Foundation (NSF)
Country of Publication:
United States
70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY; Interstellar medium; Laser-produced plasmas
OSTI Identifier: