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A Universal Scaling Law for the Fractal Energy Dissipation Domain in Self-Organized Criticality Systems View all abstracts by submitter

Markus J. Aschwanden   Submitted: 2010-08-04 14:28

Nonlinear dissipative systems in the state of self-organized criticality release energy sporadically in avalanches of all sizes, such as in earthquakes, auroral substorms, solar and stellar flares, soft gamma-ray repeaters, and pulsar glitches. The statistical occurrence frequency distributions of event energies E generally exhibit a powerlaw-like function N(E)propto E α _E with a powerlaw slope of α _E approx 1.5. The powerlaw slope α _E of energies can be related to the fractal dimension D of the spatial energy dissipation domain by D=3 α _E, which predicts a powerlaw slope α _E=1.5 for area-rupturing or area-spreading processes with D=2. For solar and stellar flares, 2-D area-spreading dissipation domains are naturally provided in current sheets or separatrix surfaces in a magnetic reconnection region. Thus, this universal scaling law provides a useful new diagnostic on the topology of the spatial energy dissipation domain in geophysical and astrophysical observations.

Authors: Markus J. Aschwanden
Projects: None

Publication Status: ApJL (sub., Aug 4, 2010)
Last Modified: 2010-08-05 07:16
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