Sherwood 2015

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Nonlinear Stabilization of the Kelvin-Helmholtz Instability in Magnetized Plasma

Author: Ben Zhu
Requested Type: Poster Only
Submitted: 2015-01-19 18:38:44

Co-authors: Manaure Francisquez, Barrett N. Rogers

Contact Info:
Dartmouth College
HB 6127
Hanover, NH   03755

Abstract Text:
Two-dimensional nonlinear electromagnetic simulations of the Kelvin-Helmholtz instability with oblique guiding magnetic fields are studied using the reduced MHD equations. Our results show that when the amplitude of the external magnetic field is comparable to the critical linear stability threshold, the KH instability will be excited (as predicted by linear theory). However, upon entering the nonlinear phase, the system will self-stabilize within several linear growth times, and relax to a configuration similar to its initial profile. Preliminary analysis suggests the self-stabilization may be caused by the linear instability driven perturbations to the magnetic field. A simplified three-mode coupling analysis also shows that the system could remain dynamically stable if an appropriate external field is applied.​


March 16-18, 2015
The Courant Institute, New York University