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Title: Transverse electron-scale instability in relativistic shear flows
Authors: Alves, E. P.
Grismayer, T.
Fonseca, R. A.
Silva, L. O.
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: American Physical Society
Abstract: Electron-scale surface waves are shown to be unstable in the transverse plane of a sheared flow in an initially unmagnetized collisionless plasma, not captured by (magneto) hydrodynamics. It is found that these unstable modes have a higher growth rate than the closely related electron-scale Kelvin-Helmholtz instability in relativistic shears. Multidimensional particle-in-cell simulations verify the analytic results and further reveal the emergence of mushroomlike electron density structures in the nonlinear phase of the instability, similar to those observed in the Rayleigh Taylor instability despite the great disparity in scales and different underlying physics. This transverse electron-scale instability may play an important role in relativistic and supersonic sheared flow scenarios, which are stable at the (magneto) hydrodynamic level. Macroscopic (>> c/omega(pe)) fields are shown to be generated by this microscopic shear instability, which are relevant for particle acceleration, radiation emission, and to seed magnetohydrodynamic processes at long time scales.
Peer reviewed: yes
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.92.021101
ISSN: 1539-3755
Accession number: WOS:000359868600001
Appears in Collections:CTI-RI - Artigos em revistas científicas internacionais com arbitragem científica

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