skip to main content
DOE PAGES title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Magnetic Pumping as a Source of Particle Heating and Power-Law Distributions in the Solar Wind

Abstract

Based on the rate of expansion of the solar wind, the plasma should cool rapidly as a function of distance to the Sun. Observations show this is not the case. In this work, a magnetic pumping model is developed as a possible explanation for the heating and the generation of power-law distribution functions observed in the solar wind plasma. Most previous studies in this area focus on the role that the dissipation of turbulent energy on microscopic kinetic scales plays in the overall heating of the plasma. However, with magnetic pumping, particles are energized by the largest-scale turbulent fluctuations, thus bypassing the energy cascade. In contrast to other models, we include the pressure anisotropy term, providing a channel for the large-scale fluctuations to heat the plasma directly. A complete set of coupled differential equations describing the evolution, and energization, of the distribution function are derived, as well as an approximate closed-form solution. Numerical simulations using the VPIC kinetic code are applied to verify the model's analytical predictions. The results of the model for realistic solar wind scenario are computed, where thermal streaming of particles are important for generating a phase shift between the magnetic perturbations and the pressure anisotropy. Inmore » turn, averaged over a pump cycle, the phase shift permits mechanical work to be converted directly to heat in the plasma. Here, the results of this scenario show that magnetic pumping may account for a significant portion of the solar wind energization.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2]; ORCiD logo [1];  [3]
  1. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
  2. Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States). Dept. of Physics
  3. Univ. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE; US Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR); National Aeronautic and Space Administration (NASA); USDOD
OSTI Identifier:
1440480
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-17-30940
Journal ID: ISSN 2041-8213; TRN: US1900746
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC52-06NA25396
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
The Astrophysical Journal. Letters
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 850; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 2041-8213
Publisher:
Institute of Physics (IOP)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTRONOMY AND ASTROPHYSICS; Heliospheric and Magnetospheric Physics; acceleration of particles; magnetic fields; plasmas; scattering; solar wind

Citation Formats

Lichko, Emily Rose, Egedal, Jan, Daughton, William Scott, and Kasper, Justin. Magnetic Pumping as a Source of Particle Heating and Power-Law Distributions in the Solar Wind. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/aa9a33.
Lichko, Emily Rose, Egedal, Jan, Daughton, William Scott, & Kasper, Justin. Magnetic Pumping as a Source of Particle Heating and Power-Law Distributions in the Solar Wind. United States. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/aa9a33.
Lichko, Emily Rose, Egedal, Jan, Daughton, William Scott, and Kasper, Justin. Mon . "Magnetic Pumping as a Source of Particle Heating and Power-Law Distributions in the Solar Wind". United States. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/aa9a33. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1440480.
@article{osti_1440480,
title = {Magnetic Pumping as a Source of Particle Heating and Power-Law Distributions in the Solar Wind},
author = {Lichko, Emily Rose and Egedal, Jan and Daughton, William Scott and Kasper, Justin},
abstractNote = {Based on the rate of expansion of the solar wind, the plasma should cool rapidly as a function of distance to the Sun. Observations show this is not the case. In this work, a magnetic pumping model is developed as a possible explanation for the heating and the generation of power-law distribution functions observed in the solar wind plasma. Most previous studies in this area focus on the role that the dissipation of turbulent energy on microscopic kinetic scales plays in the overall heating of the plasma. However, with magnetic pumping, particles are energized by the largest-scale turbulent fluctuations, thus bypassing the energy cascade. In contrast to other models, we include the pressure anisotropy term, providing a channel for the large-scale fluctuations to heat the plasma directly. A complete set of coupled differential equations describing the evolution, and energization, of the distribution function are derived, as well as an approximate closed-form solution. Numerical simulations using the VPIC kinetic code are applied to verify the model's analytical predictions. The results of the model for realistic solar wind scenario are computed, where thermal streaming of particles are important for generating a phase shift between the magnetic perturbations and the pressure anisotropy. In turn, averaged over a pump cycle, the phase shift permits mechanical work to be converted directly to heat in the plasma. Here, the results of this scenario show that magnetic pumping may account for a significant portion of the solar wind energization.},
doi = {10.3847/2041-8213/aa9a33},
journal = {The Astrophysical Journal. Letters},
number = 2,
volume = 850,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {11}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record

Citation Metrics:
Cited by: 3 works
Citation information provided by
Web of Science

Figures / Tables:

Figure 1 Figure 1: (a) A representation of the simulation domain. The colored regions are the points where the external current is applied. The width of the applied current region is increased 2.5x for visualization purposes. The black circle represents the z-coordinate where the measurements in (b-d) were obtained.(b) Plot of themore » magnetic field taken at z = $40d_e$ (c) Plot of the pressure anisotropy taken at z = $40d_e$ for $ν/ω_{pump}$ = 0, 6.78E-2, 2.26E-1,and 6.78E1. (See legend in (d)) (d) Plot of temperature taken at z = $40d_e$. Temperature measurements were obtained by taking $T_e$ = tr(P )/($3n_e$). The solid lines are the absolute results and the dotted lines are the average taken over one period.« less

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