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PIC simulations of the temperature anisotropy-driven Weibel instability: analysing the perpendicular mode
Theoretical Physics IV, Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany.
Ruhr-University Bochum.
Theoretical Physics IV, Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany.
2010 (English)In: Plasma Physics and Controlled Fusion, ISSN 0741-3335, E-ISSN 1361-6587, Vol. 52, no 8Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

An instability driven by the thermal anisotropy of a single electron species is investigated in a 2D particle-in-cell (PIC) simulation. This instability is the one considered by Weibel and it differs from the beam driven filamentation instability. A comparison of the simulation results with analytic theory provides similar exponential growth rates of the magnetic field during the linear growth phase of the instability. We observe, in accordance with previous works, the growth of electric fields during the saturation phase of the instability. Some components of this electric field are not accounted for by the linearized theory. A single-fluid-based theory is used to determine the source of this non-linear electric field. It is demonstrated that the magnetic stress tensor, which vanishes in a 1D geometry, is more important in this two-dimensional model used here. The electric field grows to an amplitude, which yields a force on the electrons that is comparable to the magnetic one. The peak energy density of each magnetic field component in the simulation plane agrees with previous estimates. Eddy currents develop, which let the amplitude of the third magnetic field component grow, which is not observed in a 1D simulation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London: IOP Publishing , 2010. Vol. 52, no 8
Keyword [en]
Astrophysics - High Energy Astrophysical Phenomena, Physics - Plasma Physics
National Category
Fusion, Plasma and Space Physics
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-57960DOI: 10.1088/0741-3335/52/8/085009OAI: diva2:329382
Available from: 2010-07-09 Created: 2010-07-09 Last updated: 2011-06-21

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Dieckmann, Mark Eric
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