Observation of magnetic field generation via the Weibel instability in interpenetrating plasma flows

C. M. Huntington, F. Fiuza, J. S. Ross, A. B. Zylstra, R. P. Drake, D. H. Froula, G. Gregori, N. L. Kugland, C. C. Kuranz, M. C. Levy, C. K. Li, J. Meinecke, T. Morita, R. Petrasso, C. Plechaty, B. A. Remington, D. D. Ryutov, Y. Sakawa, A. Spitkovsky, H. TakabeH. S. Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

121 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Collisionless shocks can be produced as a result of strong magnetic fields in a plasma flow, and therefore are common in many astrophysical systems. The Weibel instability is one candidate mechanism for the generation of sufficiently strong fields to create a collisionless shock. Despite their crucial role in astrophysical systems, observation of the magnetic fields produced by Weibel instabilities in experiments has been challenging. Using a proton probe to directly image electromagnetic fields, we present evidence of Weibel-generated magnetic fields that grow in opposing, initially unmagnetized plasma flows from laser-driven laboratory experiments. Three-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations reveal that the instability efficiently extracts energy from the plasma flows, and that the self-generated magnetic energy reaches a few percent of the total energy in the system. This result demonstrates an experimental platform suitable for the investigation of a wide range of astrophysical phenomena, including collisionless shock formation in supernova remnants, large-scale magnetic field amplification, and the radiation signature from gamma-ray bursts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173-176
Number of pages4
JournalNature Physics
Volume11
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2015
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Weibel instability
magnetohydrodynamic flow
astrophysics
shock
magnetic fields
supernova remnants
gamma ray bursts
energy
electromagnetic fields
platforms
signatures
protons
probes
radiation
cells
lasers
simulation

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

Cite this

Huntington, C. M., Fiuza, F., Ross, J. S., Zylstra, A. B., Drake, R. P., Froula, D. H., ... Park, H. S. (2015). Observation of magnetic field generation via the Weibel instability in interpenetrating plasma flows. Nature Physics, 11(2), 173-176. https://doi.org/10.1038/nphys3178

Observation of magnetic field generation via the Weibel instability in interpenetrating plasma flows. / Huntington, C. M.; Fiuza, F.; Ross, J. S.; Zylstra, A. B.; Drake, R. P.; Froula, D. H.; Gregori, G.; Kugland, N. L.; Kuranz, C. C.; Levy, M. C.; Li, C. K.; Meinecke, J.; Morita, T.; Petrasso, R.; Plechaty, C.; Remington, B. A.; Ryutov, D. D.; Sakawa, Y.; Spitkovsky, A.; Takabe, H.; Park, H. S.

In: Nature Physics, Vol. 11, No. 2, 01.01.2015, p. 173-176.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Huntington, CM, Fiuza, F, Ross, JS, Zylstra, AB, Drake, RP, Froula, DH, Gregori, G, Kugland, NL, Kuranz, CC, Levy, MC, Li, CK, Meinecke, J, Morita, T, Petrasso, R, Plechaty, C, Remington, BA, Ryutov, DD, Sakawa, Y, Spitkovsky, A, Takabe, H & Park, HS 2015, 'Observation of magnetic field generation via the Weibel instability in interpenetrating plasma flows', Nature Physics, vol. 11, no. 2, pp. 173-176. https://doi.org/10.1038/nphys3178
Huntington CM, Fiuza F, Ross JS, Zylstra AB, Drake RP, Froula DH et al. Observation of magnetic field generation via the Weibel instability in interpenetrating plasma flows. Nature Physics. 2015 Jan 1;11(2):173-176. https://doi.org/10.1038/nphys3178
Huntington, C. M. ; Fiuza, F. ; Ross, J. S. ; Zylstra, A. B. ; Drake, R. P. ; Froula, D. H. ; Gregori, G. ; Kugland, N. L. ; Kuranz, C. C. ; Levy, M. C. ; Li, C. K. ; Meinecke, J. ; Morita, T. ; Petrasso, R. ; Plechaty, C. ; Remington, B. A. ; Ryutov, D. D. ; Sakawa, Y. ; Spitkovsky, A. ; Takabe, H. ; Park, H. S. / Observation of magnetic field generation via the Weibel instability in interpenetrating plasma flows. In: Nature Physics. 2015 ; Vol. 11, No. 2. pp. 173-176.
@article{31476ea3723749299d4b4b1b881912c1,
title = "Observation of magnetic field generation via the Weibel instability in interpenetrating plasma flows",
abstract = "Collisionless shocks can be produced as a result of strong magnetic fields in a plasma flow, and therefore are common in many astrophysical systems. The Weibel instability is one candidate mechanism for the generation of sufficiently strong fields to create a collisionless shock. Despite their crucial role in astrophysical systems, observation of the magnetic fields produced by Weibel instabilities in experiments has been challenging. Using a proton probe to directly image electromagnetic fields, we present evidence of Weibel-generated magnetic fields that grow in opposing, initially unmagnetized plasma flows from laser-driven laboratory experiments. Three-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations reveal that the instability efficiently extracts energy from the plasma flows, and that the self-generated magnetic energy reaches a few percent of the total energy in the system. This result demonstrates an experimental platform suitable for the investigation of a wide range of astrophysical phenomena, including collisionless shock formation in supernova remnants, large-scale magnetic field amplification, and the radiation signature from gamma-ray bursts.",
author = "Huntington, {C. M.} and F. Fiuza and Ross, {J. S.} and Zylstra, {A. B.} and Drake, {R. P.} and Froula, {D. H.} and G. Gregori and Kugland, {N. L.} and Kuranz, {C. C.} and Levy, {M. C.} and Li, {C. K.} and J. Meinecke and T. Morita and R. Petrasso and C. Plechaty and Remington, {B. A.} and Ryutov, {D. D.} and Y. Sakawa and A. Spitkovsky and H. Takabe and Park, {H. S.}",
year = "2015",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1038/nphys3178",
language = "English",
volume = "11",
pages = "173--176",
journal = "Nature Physics",
issn = "1745-2473",
publisher = "Nature Publishing Group",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Observation of magnetic field generation via the Weibel instability in interpenetrating plasma flows

AU - Huntington, C. M.

AU - Fiuza, F.

AU - Ross, J. S.

AU - Zylstra, A. B.

AU - Drake, R. P.

AU - Froula, D. H.

AU - Gregori, G.

AU - Kugland, N. L.

AU - Kuranz, C. C.

AU - Levy, M. C.

AU - Li, C. K.

AU - Meinecke, J.

AU - Morita, T.

AU - Petrasso, R.

AU - Plechaty, C.

AU - Remington, B. A.

AU - Ryutov, D. D.

AU - Sakawa, Y.

AU - Spitkovsky, A.

AU - Takabe, H.

AU - Park, H. S.

PY - 2015/1/1

Y1 - 2015/1/1

N2 - Collisionless shocks can be produced as a result of strong magnetic fields in a plasma flow, and therefore are common in many astrophysical systems. The Weibel instability is one candidate mechanism for the generation of sufficiently strong fields to create a collisionless shock. Despite their crucial role in astrophysical systems, observation of the magnetic fields produced by Weibel instabilities in experiments has been challenging. Using a proton probe to directly image electromagnetic fields, we present evidence of Weibel-generated magnetic fields that grow in opposing, initially unmagnetized plasma flows from laser-driven laboratory experiments. Three-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations reveal that the instability efficiently extracts energy from the plasma flows, and that the self-generated magnetic energy reaches a few percent of the total energy in the system. This result demonstrates an experimental platform suitable for the investigation of a wide range of astrophysical phenomena, including collisionless shock formation in supernova remnants, large-scale magnetic field amplification, and the radiation signature from gamma-ray bursts.

AB - Collisionless shocks can be produced as a result of strong magnetic fields in a plasma flow, and therefore are common in many astrophysical systems. The Weibel instability is one candidate mechanism for the generation of sufficiently strong fields to create a collisionless shock. Despite their crucial role in astrophysical systems, observation of the magnetic fields produced by Weibel instabilities in experiments has been challenging. Using a proton probe to directly image electromagnetic fields, we present evidence of Weibel-generated magnetic fields that grow in opposing, initially unmagnetized plasma flows from laser-driven laboratory experiments. Three-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations reveal that the instability efficiently extracts energy from the plasma flows, and that the self-generated magnetic energy reaches a few percent of the total energy in the system. This result demonstrates an experimental platform suitable for the investigation of a wide range of astrophysical phenomena, including collisionless shock formation in supernova remnants, large-scale magnetic field amplification, and the radiation signature from gamma-ray bursts.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84923861376&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84923861376&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1038/nphys3178

DO - 10.1038/nphys3178

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84923861376

VL - 11

SP - 173

EP - 176

JO - Nature Physics

JF - Nature Physics

SN - 1745-2473

IS - 2

ER -