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The plasmoid instability during asymmetric inflow magnetic reconnection
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10.1063/1.4811470
/content/aip/journal/pop/20/6/10.1063/1.4811470
http://aip.metastore.ingenta.com/content/aip/journal/pop/20/6/10.1063/1.4811470
View: Figures

Figures

Image of FIG. 1.
FIG. 1.

Simulation of the plasmoid instability with symmetric inflow ( ) at  = 324. Shown are contours of the (a) magnetic flux; (b) out-of-plane current density, ; (c) plasma density, ρ; (d) plasma pressure, ; (e) the outflow component of velocity, ; (f) the inflow component of velocity, ; and (g) the vorticity, . X-points are denoted by “×” and O-points are denoted by “ ”. The green dots in panels (e) and (f) represent flow stagnation points.

Image of FIG. 2.
FIG. 2.

Simulation of the plasmoid instability with asymmetric inflow ( ) at  = 731. Shown are contours of the (a) magnetic flux; (b) out-of-plane current density, ; (c) plasma density, ρ; (d) plasma pressure, ; (e) the outflow component of velocity, ; (f) the inflow component of velocity, ; and (g) the vorticity, . X-points are denoted by “×” and O-points are denoted by “ ”. The green dots in panels (e) and (f) represent flow stagnation points.

Image of FIG. 3.
FIG. 3.

Secondary merging between two plasmoids at  = 818 for and . Shown are (a) magnetic flux contours and velocity vectors in the frame of the moving X-point, , and (b) out-of-plane current density, . The local flow pattern is dominated by shear flow associated with island vorticity. The longest vector corresponds to a velocity of 0.17 while the characteristic Alfvén speed in the islands is ∼0.1. The X-point is denoted by “×.”

Image of FIG. 4.
FIG. 4.

The reconnection rate as a function of time for simulations with different asymmetries and domain sizes. The reconnection rate is given by the maximum out-of-plane electric field among all of the X-points in a simulation. The horizontal line segments indicate the reconnection rate predicted by Eq. (18) . The predictions for are not shown, but are factors of greater than the predictions for .

Image of FIG. 5.
FIG. 5.

Results from a parameter study to test the dependence of the initial magnetic asymmetry ratio, , and the half-size of the computational domain along the outflow direction, , on the onset of the plasmoid instability. Simulations are classified as unstable if new X-points form in the current sheet before . Blue triangles indicate instability, while red diamonds indicate stability. The gray dotted lines are contours of constant initial hybrid Lundquist number, .

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/content/aip/journal/pop/20/6/10.1063/1.4811470
2013-06-19
2014-04-18
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752b84549af89a08dbdd7fdb8b9568b5 journal.articlezxybnytfddd
Scitation: The plasmoid instability during asymmetric inflow magnetic reconnection
http://aip.metastore.ingenta.com/content/aip/journal/pop/20/6/10.1063/1.4811470
10.1063/1.4811470
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