skip to main content

Title: On the nature of kinetic electrostatic electron nonlinear (KEEN) waves

An analytical theory is proposed for the kinetic electrostatic electron nonlinear (KEEN) waves originally found in simulations by Afeyan et al. [arXiv:1210.8105]. We suggest that KEEN waves represent saturated states of the negative mass instability (NMI) reported recently by Dodin et al. [Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 215006 (2013)]. Due to the NMI, trapped electrons form macroparticles that produce field oscillations at harmonics of the bounce frequency. At large enough amplitudes, these harmonics can phase-lock to the main wave and form stable nonlinear dissipationless structures that are nonstationary but otherwise similar to Bernstein-Greene-Kruskal modes. The theory explains why the formation of KEEN modes is sensitive to the excitation scenario and yields estimates that agree with the numerical results of Afeyan et al. A new type of KEEN wave may be possible at even larger amplitudes of the driving field than those used in simulations so far.
Authors:
;  [1]
  1. Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey 08543 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22251961
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Physics of Plasmas; Journal Volume: 21; Journal Issue: 3; Other Information: (c) 2014 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY; AMPLITUDES; EXCITATION; HARMONICS; NEGATIVE MASS INSTABILITY; NONLINEAR PROBLEMS; SIMULATION; TRAPPED ELECTRONS