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Title: Scalings pertaining to current sheet disruption mediated by the plasmoid instability

Abstract

Analytic scaling relations are derived for a phenomenological model of the plasmoid instability in an evolving current sheet, including the effects of reconnection outflow. Two scenarios are considered, where the plasmoid instability can be triggered either by an injected initial perturbation or by the natural noise of the system (here referred to as the system noise). The two scenarios lead to different scaling relations because the initial noise decays when the linear growth of the plasmoid instability is not sufficiently fast to overcome the advection loss caused by the reconnection outflow, whereas the system noise represents the lowest level of fluctuations in the system. The leading order approximation for the current sheet width at disruption takes the form of a power law multiplied by a logarithmic factor, and from that, the scaling relations for the wavenumber and the linear growth rate of the dominant mode are obtained. When the effects of the outflow are neglected, the scaling relations agree, up to the leading order approximation, with previously derived scaling relations based on a principle of least time. As a result, the analytical scaling relations are validated with numerical solutions of the model.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [2];  [3]
  1. Princeton Univ., Princeton, NJ (United States)
  2. Columbia Univ., New York, NY (United States)
  3. Princeton Univ., Princeton, NJ (United States); Flatiron Inst., New York, NY (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. (PPPL), Princeton, NJ (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1572706
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1564541
Grant/Contract Number:  
AGS-1338944; AGS-1460169; SC0016470; 80NSSC18K1285
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physics of Plasmas
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 26; Journal Issue: 9; 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

Huang, Yi-Min, Comisso, Luca, and Bhattacharjee, Amitava. Scalings pertaining to current sheet disruption mediated by the plasmoid instability. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1063/1.5110332.
Huang, Yi-Min, Comisso, Luca, & Bhattacharjee, Amitava. Scalings pertaining to current sheet disruption mediated by the plasmoid instability. United States. doi:10.1063/1.5110332.
Huang, Yi-Min, Comisso, Luca, and Bhattacharjee, Amitava. Mon . "Scalings pertaining to current sheet disruption mediated by the plasmoid instability". United States. doi:10.1063/1.5110332.
@article{osti_1572706,
title = {Scalings pertaining to current sheet disruption mediated by the plasmoid instability},
author = {Huang, Yi-Min and Comisso, Luca and Bhattacharjee, Amitava},
abstractNote = {Analytic scaling relations are derived for a phenomenological model of the plasmoid instability in an evolving current sheet, including the effects of reconnection outflow. Two scenarios are considered, where the plasmoid instability can be triggered either by an injected initial perturbation or by the natural noise of the system (here referred to as the system noise). The two scenarios lead to different scaling relations because the initial noise decays when the linear growth of the plasmoid instability is not sufficiently fast to overcome the advection loss caused by the reconnection outflow, whereas the system noise represents the lowest level of fluctuations in the system. The leading order approximation for the current sheet width at disruption takes the form of a power law multiplied by a logarithmic factor, and from that, the scaling relations for the wavenumber and the linear growth rate of the dominant mode are obtained. When the effects of the outflow are neglected, the scaling relations agree, up to the leading order approximation, with previously derived scaling relations based on a principle of least time. As a result, the analytical scaling relations are validated with numerical solutions of the model.},
doi = {10.1063/1.5110332},
journal = {Physics of Plasmas},
number = 9,
volume = 26,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {9}
}

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