Spontaneous reconnection at a separator current layer : 2. Nature of the waves and flows
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Sudden destabilizations of the magnetic field, such as those caused by spontaneous reconnection, will produce waves and/or flows. Here we investigate the nature of the plasma motions resulting from spontaneous reconnection at a 3‐D separator. In order to clearly see these perturbations, we start from a magnetohydrostatic equilibrium containing two oppositely signed null points joined by a generic separator along which lies a twisted current layer. The nature of the magnetic reconnection initiated in this equilibrium as a result of an anomalous diffusivity is discussed in detail in Stevenson and Parnell (2015). The resulting sudden loss of force balance inevitably generates waves that propagate away from the diffusion region carrying the dissipated current. In their wake a twisting stagnation flow, in planes perpendicular to the separator, feeds flux back into the original diffusion site (the separator) in order to try to regain equilibrium. This flow drives a phase of slow weak impulsive bursty reconnection that follows on after the initial fast‐reconnection phase.
E. H. Stevenson , J & E. Parnell , C 2015 , ' Spontaneous reconnection at a separator current layer : 2. Nature of the waves and flows ' , Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics , vol. 120 , no. 12 , pp. 10353-10369 . https://doi.org/10.1002/2015JA021736
Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Copyright © 2015, American Geophysical Union. All rights reserved. This work is made available online in accordance with the publisher’s policies. This is the author created, accepted version manuscript following peer review and may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at onlinelibrary.wiley.com / https://doi.org/10.1002/2015JA021730
DescriptionJEHS would like to thank STFC for financial support during her Ph.D and continued support after on the St Andrews SMTG’s STFC consortium grant. CEP also acknowledges support from this same grant.
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