Scalings pertaining to current sheet disruption mediated by the plasmoid instability

  title={Scalings pertaining to current sheet disruption mediated by the plasmoid instability},
  author={Yi-Min Huang and Luca Comisso and Amit Kumar Bhattacharjee},
  journal={Physics of Plasmas},
Analytic scaling relations are derived for a phenomenological model of the plasmoid instability in an evolving current sheet, including the effects of reconnection outflow. Two scenarios are considered, where the plasmoid instability can be triggered either by an injected initial perturbation or by the natural noise of the system (here referred to as the system noise). The two scenarios lead to different scaling relations because the initial noise decays when the linear growth of the plasmoid… 

Figures and Tables from this paper

On the growth rate of plasmoid chains during nonlinear viscoresistive evolution of the tilt instability

We investigate by means of two-dimensional incompressible magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) numerical simulations, the onset phase of the fast collisional magnetic reconnection regime that is supported by

Formation of plasmoid chains and fast magnetic reconnection during nonlinear evolution of the tilt instability

We investigate, by means of two-dimensional incompressible magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) numerical simulations, the fast collisional magnetic reconnection regime that is supported by the formation of

MHD turbulence: a biased review

This review of scaling theories of magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) turbulence aims to put the developments of the last few years in the context of the canonical time line (from Kolmogorov to

Coexistence of Plasmoid and Kelvin–Helmholtz Instabilities in Collisionless Plasma Turbulence

The plasmoid formation in collisionless plasmas, where magnetic reconnection within turbulence may take place driven by the electron inertia, is analyzed. We find a complex situation in which, due to

Observations and Modeling of the Onset of Fast Reconnection in the Solar Transition Region

Magnetic reconnection is a fundamental plasma process that plays a critical role not only in energy release in the solar atmosphere, but also in fusion, astrophysics, and other space plasma

The rapid destruction of toroidal magnetic surfaces

An ideal magnetic evolution can cause the development of an exponentially large variation between the distance of closest approach and greatest separation between neighboring pairs of magnetic field

Reconnection and particle acceleration in three-dimensional current sheet evolution in moderately magnetized astrophysical pair plasma

Magnetic reconnection, a plasma process converting magnetic energy to particle kinetic energy, is often invoked to explain magnetic energy releases powering high-energy flares in astrophysical

Magnetic reconnection and thermal equilibration

When a magnetic field is forced to evolve on a time scale $\tau_{ev}$, as by footpoint motions driving the solar corona or non-axisymmetric instabilities in tokamaks, the magnetic field lines undergo

Onset of Turbulent Fast Magnetic Reconnection Observed in the Solar Atmosphere

Fast magnetic reconnection powers explosive events throughout the universe, from gamma-ray bursts to solar flares. Despite its importance, the onset of astrophysical fast reconnection is the subject

Changed paradigm of fast magnetic reconnection.

Although magnetic reconnection takes place in three-dimensional space, reconnection theory has focused on two-dimensional models for more than sixty years. Well-posed three-dimensional mathematics



Plasmoid Instability in Evolving Current Sheets and Onset of Fast Reconnection

The scaling of the plasmoid instability maximum linear growth rate with respect to the Lundquist number S in a Sweet–Parker current sheet, , indicates that at high S, the current sheet will break

Role of the Plasmoid Instability in Magnetohydrodynamic Turbulence.

The role of the plasmoid instability in two-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) turbulence by means of high-resolution direct numerical simulations is studied and it is demonstrated that the scale-dependent dynamic alignment exists in 2D MHD turbulence and the corresponding slope of the alignment angle is close to 0.25.

Plasmoid Instability in Forming Current Sheets

The plasmoid instability has revolutionized our understanding of magnetic reconnection in astrophysical environments. By preventing the formation of highly elongated reconnection layers, it is


It has been established that the Sweet–Parker current layer in high Lundquist number reconnection is unstable to the super-Alfvénic plasmoid instability. Past two-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic

Magnetohydrodynamic Turbulence in the Plasmoid-mediated Regime

Magnetohydrodynamic turbulence and magnetic reconnection are ubiquitous in astrophysical environments. In most situations these processes do not occur in isolation but interact with each other. This

Fast reconnection in high-Lundquist-number plasmas due to the plasmoid Instability

Thin current sheets in systems of large size that exceed a critical value of the Lundquist number are unstable to a super-Alfvenic tearing instability, referred to hereafter as the plasmoid

Visco-resistive plasmoid instability

The plasmoid instability in visco-resistive current sheets is analyzed in both the linear and nonlinear regimes. The linear growth rate and the wavenumber are found to scale as S1/4(1+Pm)−5/8 and

Magnetic Reconnection Onset via Disruption of a Forming Current Sheet by the Tearing Instability.

In order to understand the onset of magnetic reconnection, one needs to consider the growth of the tearing instability in a current layer as it is being formed, in the context of nonlinear resistive magnetohydrodynamics for a generic time-dependent equilibrium representing a gradually forming current sheet.

Coherent structure formation and magnetic field line reconnection in magnetohydrodynamic turbulence

The effects produced by the occurrence of both ideal and resistive instabilities in magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) turbulence are discussed, from the point of view of the formation of coherent structures.

Magnetohydrodynamic Turbulence Mediated by Reconnection

Magnetic field fluctuations in magnetohydrodynamic turbulence can be viewed as current sheets that are progressively more anisotropic at smaller scales. As suggested by Loureiro & Boldyrev and Mallet