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Three-scale structure of diffusion region in the presence of cold ions
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2016 (English)In: Journal of Geophysical Research - Space Physics, ISSN 2169-9380, E-ISSN 2169-9402, Vol. 121, no 12, p. 12,001-12,013Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Description
Abstract [en]

Kinetic simulations and spacecraft observations typically display the two-scale structure of collisionless diffusion region (DR), with electron and ion demagnetization scales governing the spatial extent of the DR. Recent in situ observations of the nightside magnetosphere, as well as investigation of magnetic reconnection events at the Earth's magnetopause, discovered the presence of a population of cold (tens of eV) ions of ionospheric origin. We present two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations of collisionless magnetic reconnection in multicomponent plasma with ions consisting of hot and cold populations. We show that a new cold ion diffusion region scale is introduced in between that of hot ions and electrons. Demagnetization scale of cold ion population is several times (∼4–8) larger than the initial cold ion gyroradius. Cold ions are accelerated and thermalized during magnetic reconnection and form ion beams moving with velocities close to the Alfvén velocity.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Blackwell Publishing, 2016. Vol. 121, no 12, p. 12,001-12,013
Keywords [en]
magnetic reconnection, numerical simulations, particle-in-cell
National Category
Geophysics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-201174DOI: 10.1002/2016JA023606ISI: 000393183300027Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85007464336OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-201174DiVA, id: diva2:1073016
Note

QC 20170209

Available from: 2017-02-09 Created: 2017-02-09 Last updated: 2019-06-13Bibliographically approved

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Vaivads, AndrisMarkidis, Stefano
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