Volume 112, Number 6, December 2015
|Number of page(s)||6|
|Section||Physics of Gases, Plasmas and Electric Discharges|
|Published online||31 December 2015|
Spontaneous excitation of convective cells by kinetic Alfvén waves
1 C.R. ENEA Frascati - C.P. 65, 00044 Frascati, Italy
2 Institute for Fusion Theory and Simulation and Department of Physics, Zhejiang University Hangzhou 310027, PRC
3 Physics Department, Auburn University - Auburn, AL 36849-5311, USA
4 Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of California - Irvine CA 92697-4575, USA
Received: 26 August 2015
Accepted: 14 December 2015
Spontaneous excitation of convective cells by kinetic Alfvén waves in a uniform plasma is investigated analytically employing the nonlinear gyrokinetic equations. Self-consistent theoretical analysis demonstrates the novel results that excitation via modulational instability can only occur when the finite ion Larmor radius effects are properly included, and, furthermore, both the electrostatic and magnetostatic convective cells are excited simultaneously. Theoretical predictions are verified with direct numerical simulations; showing excellent agreement in the modulational growth rate and field structures. Significant implications of the present results to the cross-field transport in space and fusion plasmas are also briefly discussed.
PACS: 52.30.Gz – Gyrokinetics / 52.35.Bj – Magnetohydrodynamic waves (e.g., Alfven waves) / 52.35.Mw – Nonlinear phenomena: waves, wave propagation, and other interactions (including parametric effects, mode coupling, ponderomotive effects, etc.)
© EPLA, 2015
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