NUMERICAL SIMULATIONS OF PLASMA DYNAMICS IN THE VICINITY OF A RETRACTING FLUX TUBE
Roger B Scott, Dana W Longcope, David E McKenzie
In a previous paper, we presented an analytical, zero-beta model for supra-arcade downflows in which a retracting flux tube deforms the surrounding magnetic field, constricting the flow of plasma along affected field lines and, in some cases, forcing the plasma to exhibit collimated shocks. Here we present a numerical simulation based on the same model construction-a retracting flux tube is treated as a rigid boundary around which the plasma is forced to flow and the magnetic field and plasma evolve according to the governing equations of magnetohydrodynamics. We find that the collimated shocks described in our previous study are recovered for plasma beta in the range of 0 less than or similar to beta less than or similar to 1, while for 1 less than or similar to beta the behavior is similar to the simpler hydrodynamic case, with classical bow shocks forming when the acoustic Mach number approaches or exceeds unity. Furthermore, we find that while the plasma beta is important for identifying the various types of behaviors, more important still is the Alfven Mach number, which, if large, implies that the bulk kinetic energy of the fluid exceeds the internal energy of the magnetic field, thereby leading to the formation of unconfined, fast-mode magnetosonic shocks, even in the limit of small beta.
How is this information collected?
This collection of Montana State authored publications is collected by the Library to highlight the achievements of Montana State researchers and more fully understand the research output of the University. They use a number of resources to pull together as complete a list as possible and understand that there may be publications that are missed. If you note the omission of a current publication or want to know more about the collection and display of this information email Leila Sterman.