Nonrelativistic collisionless shocks in weakly magnetized electron-ion plasmas: two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulation of perpendicular shock.
KATO T.N. and TAKABE H.
Abstract (from CDS):
A two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulation is performed to investigate weakly magnetized perpendicular shocks with a magnetization parameter of σ = 6x10–5, which is equivalent to a high Alfvén Mach number M A of ∼130. It is shown that current filaments form in the foot region of the shock due to the ion-beam-Weibel instability (or the ion filamentation instability) and that they generate a strong magnetic field there. In the downstream region, these current filaments also generate a tangled magnetic field that is typically 15 times stronger than the upstream magnetic field. The thermal energies of electrons and ions in the downstream region are not in equipartition and their temperature ratio is Te/Ti∼ 0.3-0.4. Efficient electron acceleration was not observed in our simulation, although a fraction of the ions are accelerated slightly on reflection at the shock. The simulation results agree very well with the Rankine-Hugoniot relations. It is also shown that electrons and ions are heated in the foot region by the Buneman instability (for electrons) and the ion-acoustic instability (for both electrons and ions). However, the growth rate of the Buneman instability is significantly reduced due to the relatively high temperature of the reflected ions. For the same reason, ion-ion streaming instability does not grow in the foot region.