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Title:
Invalidity of local thermodynamic equilibrium for electrons in the solar transition region. I - Fokker-Planck results
Authors:
Shoub, E. C.
Affiliation:
AA(Stanford University, Stanford, CA)
Publication:
Astrophysical Journal, Part 1, vol. 266, Mar. 1, 1983, p. 339-369. (ApJ Homepage)
Publication Date:
03/1983
Category:
Solar Physics
Origin:
STI
NASA/STI Keywords:
Boundary Layer Transition, Distribution Functions, Electrons, Plasmas (Physics), Solar Atmosphere, Boundary Value Problems, Fokker-Planck Equation, Mathematical Models
DOI:
10.1086/160783
Bibliographic Code:
1983ApJ...266..339S

Abstract

An effective numerical method for solving boundary value problems for the Landau Fokker-Planck equation is developed and applied to calculating the electron velocity distribution function in model solar transition regions. Numerical results illustrating the speed, pitch angle, and spatial dependence of the distribution function are presented. From these it is concluded that the widely invoked assumption that in weakly inhomogeneous collisional plasma the angle-averaged distribution function remains close to local Maxwellian distribution is incorrect. Implications of the breakdown of the local Maxwellian approximation for several outstanding questions related to the solar transition region are discussed.

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Physics
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