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Front. Astron. Space Sci. | doi: 10.3389/fspas.2018.00051

Recalling and Updating Research on Diamagnetic Cavities: Experiments, Theory, Simulations

 Dan Winske1*, Joseph D. Huba2, Christoph Niemann3 and Ari Le1
  • 1Los Alamos National Laboratory (DOE), United States
  • 2United States Naval Research Laboratory, United States
  • 3UCLA Department of Physics and Astronomy, United States

In the decade from the mid 80’s to the mid 90’s there was considerable interest in the generation of diamagnetic cavities produced by the sub-Alfvenic expansion of heavy ions across a background magnetic field. Examples included the AMPTE and CRRES barium releases in the magnetotail and magnetosphere as well as laser experiments at various laboratories in the United States and the Soviet Union. In all of these experiments field-aligned striations and other small-scale structures were produced as the cavities formed. Local and non-local linear theory as well as full particle (PIC), hybrid and Hall-MHD simulations (mostly 2-D) were developed and used to understand at least qualitatively the features of these experiments. Much of this review is a summary of this work, with the addition of some new 3-D PIC and Hall-MHD simulations that clarify old issues associated with the origin and evolution of cavities and their surface features. In the last part of this review we discuss recent extensions of the earlier efforts: new space observations of cavity-like structures as well as new laboratory experiments and calculations with greatly improved diagnostics of cavities formed by expansions of laser-produced ions at super-Alfvenic speeds both across and along the background magnetic field.

Keywords: magnetic cavities, plasma instabiities, active experiments in space, kinetic plasma simulations, Hall-MHD simulations

Received: 28 Nov 2018; Accepted: 21 Dec 2018.

Edited by:

Joseph E. Borovsky, Space Science Institute, United States

Reviewed by:

Yasuhito Narita, Austrian Academy of Sciences (OAW), Austria
Hermann Lühr, Helmholtz Center Potsdam German Geophysical Research Center (GFZ), Helmholtz Association of German Research Centers (HZ), Germany  

Copyright: © 2018 Winske, Huba, Niemann and Le. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Dan Winske, Los Alamos National Laboratory (DOE), Los Alamos, United States, winske@lanl.gov