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Magnetic Reconnection in Plasma under Inertial Confinement Fusion Conditions Driven by Heat Flux Effects in Ohm's Law

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Article number105004
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>14/03/2014
<mark>Journal</mark>Physical Review Letters
Issue number10
Volume112
Number of pages5
StatePublished
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

In the interaction of high-power laser beams with solid density plasma there are a number of mechanisms that generate strong magnetic fields. Such fields subsequently inhibit or redirect electron flows, but can themselves be advected by heat fluxes, resulting in complex interplay between thermal transport and magnetic fields. We show that for heating by multiple laser spots reconnection of magnetic field lines can occur, mediated by these heat fluxes, using a fully implicit 2D Vlasov-Fokker-Planck code. Under such conditions, the reconnection rate is dictated by heat flows rather than Alfvenic flows. We find that this mechanism is only relevant in a high beta plasma. However, the Hall parameter omega(c)tau(ei) can be large so that thermal transport is strongly modified by these magnetic fields, which can impact longer time scale temperature homogeneity and ion dynamics in the system.