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This content will become publicly available on May 29, 2019

Title: Wave kinetics of drift-wave turbulence and zonal flows beyond the ray approximation

Inhomogeneous drift-wave turbulence can be modeled as an effective plasma where drift waves act as quantumlike particles and the zonal-flow velocity serves as a collective field through which they interact. This effective plasma can be described by a Wigner-Moyal equation (WME), which generalizes the quasilinear wave-kinetic equation (WKE) to the full-wave regime, i.e., resolves the wavelength scale. Unlike waves governed by manifestly quantumlike equations, whose WMEs can be borrowed from quantum mechanics and are commonly known, drift waves have Hamiltonians very different from those of conventional quantum particles. This causes unusual phase-space dynamics that is typically not captured by the WKE. We demonstrate how to correctly model this dynamics with the WME instead. Specifically, we report full-wave phase-space simulations of the zonal-flow formation (zonostrophic instability), deterioration (tertiary instability), and the so-called predator-prey oscillations. We also show how the WME facilitates analysis of these phenomena, namely, (i) we show that full-wave effects critically affect the zonostrophic instability, particularly its nonlinear stage and saturation; (ii) we derive the tertiary-instability growth rate; and (iii) we demonstrate that, with full-wave effects retained, the predator-prey oscillations do not require zonal-flow collisional damping, contrary to previous studies. In conclusion, we also show how the famous Rayleigh-Kuomore » criterion, which has been missing in wave-kinetic theories of drift-wave turbulence, emerges from the WME.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [1]
  1. Princeton Univ., Princeton, NJ (United States); Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. (PPPL), Princeton, NJ (United States)
  2. Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. (PPPL), Princeton, NJ (United States)
  3. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
AC02-09CH11466; NA0003525
Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physical Review E
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 97; Journal Issue: 5; Journal ID: ISSN 2470-0045
Publisher:
American Physical Society (APS)
Research Org:
Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. (PPPL), Princeton, NJ (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY
OSTI Identifier:
1440782
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1439383