Title: Contact discontinuities in collisionless plasmas: A comparison of hybrid and kinetic simulations
Authors: Lapenta, Giovanni ×
Brackbill, JU #
Issue Date: 1996
Publisher: Amer geophysical union
Series Title: Geophysical research letters vol:23 issue:14 pages:1713-1716
Abstract: A comparison of full kinetic and hybrid simulations for T-e/T-i > 1, where T-e(T-i) is the electron (ion) temperature, indicates that contact discontinuities cannot persist in collisionless plasmas. A simple analysis suggests that the potential barrier to ion mass and thermal transport identified by Wu et al. [1994] in their hybrid calculations can preserve the contact discontinuity if the contributions of electron thermal transport are small. When T-e/T-i > 1, electron energy transport in kinetic calculations results in large potentials which reduce the effectiveness of the potential barrier. Thus, contact discontinuities are unlikely to be observed in spacecraft observations.
ISSN: 0094-8276
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Plasma-astrophysics Section
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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