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Alfvén-Wave Instability of Current Sheets in Force-Free Collisionless Plasmas

Bellan, P. M. (1999) Alfvén-Wave Instability of Current Sheets in Force-Free Collisionless Plasmas. Physical Review Letters, 83 (23). pp. 4768-4771. ISSN 0031-9007. http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:BELprl99

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Abstract

If the current sheet between adjacent twisted magnetic flux tubes is sufficiently thin, the electron flow velocity becomes comparable to the Alfvén velocity and can destabilize collisionless Alfvén waves. The threshold for instability in force-free plasmas is calculated for both inertial and kinetic Alfvén-wave regimes. When there is strong magnetic shear, unstable kinetic Alfvén waves can resonantly accelerate ions to energies much higher than the electron temperature.


Item Type:Article
Additional Information:©1999 The American Physical Society. Received 24 May 1999; revised 20 September 1999. The author wishes to thank the International Space Science Institute (Bern, Switzerland) for hosting a series of Alfvén-wave workshops which stimulated thought on this topic. This work was supported by USDOE.
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:BELprl99
Persistent URL:http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:BELprl99
Alternative URL:http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.83.4768
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:9348
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Archive Administrator
Deposited On:14 Dec 2007
Last Modified:26 Dec 2012 09:47

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