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Title: The evolution of the ion diffusion region during collisionless magnetic reconnection in a force-free current sheet

Two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulation is performed to investigate magnetic reconnection in a force-free current sheet. The results show that the evolution of the ion diffusion region has two different phases. In the first phase, the electrons flow toward the X line along one pair of separatrices and away from the X line along the other pair of separatrices. Therefore, in the ion diffusion region, a distorted quadrupole structure of the out-of-plane magnetic field is formed, which is similar to that of a typical guide field reconnection in the Harris current sheet. In the second phase, the electrons move toward the X line along the separatrices and then flow away from the X line at the inner side of the separatrices. In the ion diffusion region, the out-of-plane magnetic field exhibits a characteristic quadrupole pattern with a good symmetry, which is similar to that of antiparallel reconnection in the Harris current sheet.
Authors:
; ; ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3]
  1. CAS Key Laboratory of Geospace Environment, Department of Geophysics and Planetary Science, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026 (China)
  2. (China)
  3. CAS Key Laboratory of Geospace Environment, Department of Modern Physics, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026 (China)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22490133
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Physics of Plasmas; Journal Volume: 22; Journal Issue: 9; Other Information: (c) 2015 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; COLLISIONLESS PLASMA; CURRENTS; DIFFUSION; ELECTRONS; MAGNETIC FIELDS; MAGNETIC RECONNECTION; PLASMA SIMULATION; TWO-DIMENSIONAL CALCULATIONS