Physics Department Seminar University of Alaska Fairbanks

J O U R N A L    C L U B

3D Simulations of Magnetic Reconnection in a Dusty Plasma
Samuel Lazerson
Physics Dept/GI UAF

Recent work by Dr. Wiechen and myself resulted in the first 3D self consistent multi-fluid simulations of magnetic reconnection in a dusty plasma. Utilization of the DENISIS multi-fluid code was essential to this task. We found that a Harris-like current sheet yielded a poor equilibrium in a dusty plasma. A ballistic relaxation technique was employed to relax the Harris-like current sheet into a pseudo equilibrium. A perturbation was then applied to this current sheet to initiate reconnection. We studied a variety of resistive models and found that a parameter-dependent resistivity yielded a 26% decrease in magnetic energy while a static resistive model yielded a 20% decrease. Of particular interest were the large dust-neutral relative velocities produced by reconnection. We examined the possibility of aerodynamic drag heating of the particles. We suggest future work in order to evaluate the role magnetic reconnection may play in protosolar nebulae. This work was recently accepted for publication in the Journal of Plasma Physics.

Friday, 16 November 2007
Globe Room, Elvey Building
3:45 PM