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Title: ON INTERMITTENT TURBULENCE HEATING OF THE SOLAR WIND: DIFFERENCES BETWEEN TANGENTIAL AND ROTATIONAL DISCONTINUITIES

The intermittent structures in solar wind turbulence, studied by using measurements from the WIND spacecraft, are identified as being mostly rotational discontinuities (RDs) and rarely tangential discontinuities (TDs) based on the technique described by Smith. Only TD-associated current sheets (TCSs) are found to be accompanied with strong local heating of the solar wind plasma. Statistical results show that the TCSs have a distinct tendency to be associated with local enhancements of the proton temperature, density, and plasma beta, and a local decrease of magnetic field magnitude. Conversely, for RDs, our statistical results do not reveal convincing heating effects. These results confirm the notion that dissipation of solar wind turbulence can take place in intermittent or locally isolated small-scale regions which correspond to TCSs. The possibility of heating associated with RDs is discussed.
Authors:
; ; ;  [1] ;  [2]
  1. School of Earth and Space Sciences, Peking University, 100871 Beijing (China)
  2. Institute for Experimental and Applied Physics, Christian Albrechts University at Kiel, D-24118 Kiel (Germany)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22140336
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal Letters; Journal Volume: 772; Journal Issue: 2; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; DENSITY; HEATING; MAGNETIC FIELDS; PLASMA; PROTON TEMPERATURE; SOLAR WIND; TURBULENCE