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Title:
Propagation of a nonlinear wave packet driven in a relaxed magnetohydrodynamic plasma
Authors:
Kaur, M.; Brown, M. R.
Affiliation:
AA(Department of Physics and Astronomy, Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, Pennsylvania 19081, USA), AB(Department of Physics and Astronomy, Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, Pennsylvania 19081, USA)
Publication:
Journal of Plasma Physics, Volume 84, Issue 6, article id. 905840614, 14 pp.
Publication Date:
12/2018
Origin:
CUP
Keywords:
astrophysical plasmas, plasma waves
Abstract Copyright:
(c) 2018: © Cambridge University Press 2018
DOI:
10.1017/S0022377818001265
Bibliographic Code:
2018JPlPh..84f9014K

Abstract

We report the observation of a nonlinear wave packet propagating through a relaxed Taylor state in the Swarthmore Spheromak eXperiment (SSX) device. The wave packet is launched by a fast, pulsed, high current ( ) single-turn theta-pinch coil mounted outside the plasma vessel. The theta-pinch coil is energized by discharging a 40 kV, 2 kJ capacitor circuit. The wave packet velocity is super-thermal and super-Alfvénic its group velocity is more consistent with a whistler pulse than other characteristic velocities. We also observe a fast density pulse which indicates that it is not Alfvénic in nature.
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