Ring-shaped velocity distribution functions in energy-dispersed structures formed at the boundaries of a proton stream injected into a transverse magnetic field: Test-kinetic results
Transverse magnetic field
Kinetic theory of gases
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In this paper, we discuss the formation of ring-shaped and gyro-phase restricted velocity distribution functions (VDFs) at the edges of a cloud of protons injected into non-uniform distributions of the electromagnetic field. The velocity distribution function is reconstructed using the forward test-kinetic method. We consider two profiles of the electric field: (1) a non-uniform E-field obtained by solving the Laplace equation consistent with the conservation of the electric drift and (2) a constant and uniform E-field. In both cases, the magnetic field is similar to the solutions obtained for tangential discontinuities. The initial velocity distribution function is Liouville mapped along numerically integrated trajectories. The numerical results show the formation of an energy-dispersed structure due to the energy-dependent displacement of protons towards the edges of the cloud by the gradient-B drift. Another direct effect of the gradient-B drift is the formation of ring-shaped velocity distribution functions within the velocity-dispersed structure. Higher energy particles populate the edges of the proton beam, while smaller energies are located in the core. Non-gyrotropic velocity distribution functions form on the front-side and trailing edge of the cloud; this effect is due to remote sensing of energetic particles with guiding centers inside the beam. The kinetic features revealed by the test-kinetic solutions have features similar to in-situ velocity distribution functions observed by Cluster satellites in the magnetotail, close to the neutral sheet.
CitationVoitcu, G.; Echim, M.M. (2012). Ring-shaped velocity distribution functions in energy-dispersed structures formed at the boundaries of a proton stream injected into a transverse magnetic field: Test-kinetic results. , Physics of Plasmas, Vol. 19, Issue 2, 22903, DOI: 10.1063/1.3686134.