July 27, 2015 to August 21, 2015
Nordita, Stockholm
Europe/Stockholm timezone

Modeling reconnection with particle-assisted magnetohydrodynamics

Aug 13, 2015, 2:50 PM
FD5 (Nordita, Stockholm)


Nordita, Stockholm

Oral Workshop, August 10-14 Post-noon IV


Ilja Honkonen (NASA/GSFC)


Due to its multi-scale nature, magnetic reconnection is difficult to model numerically using a full electromagnetic description of plasma in a system whose size is orders of magnitude larger than the smallest relevant spatial scales. In the context of Earth's magnetosphere reconnection has been modeled using a magnetohydrodynamic description of plasma for decades while kinetic effects have mostly been limited to predetermined spatial regions via coupling to various specialized kinetic models. Recently progress has been made towards modeling the entire magnetosphere using a kinetic description of plasma but the required computational resources are still prohibitive for most scientists. We present a method which allows the kinetic effects of ions to be included in a magnetohydrodynamic model by representing plasma both as ions and as a fluid. A novel aspect of the method is that plasma mass can be distributed arbitrarily between fluid and particles, thereby allowing kinetic effects to be included only in regions of interest. It is also possible to have a smooth transition between fluid and kinetic physics in contrast to existing computational models in which a discontinuity in physics exists when transitioning between regions of different physical descriptions of plasma. By varying the fraction of plasma mass represented by particles it is also possible to gain insight into the physical effects required for and produced by various phenomena such as magnetic reconnection.

Primary author

Ilja Honkonen (NASA/GSFC)


Alex Glocer (NASA/GSFC)

Presentation materials