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Magnetoacoustic waves in a partially ionized two-fluid plasma View all abstracts by submitter

Roberto Soler   Submitted: 2013-09-30 11:57

Compressible disturbances propagate in a plasma in the form of magnetoacoustic waves driven by both gas pressure and magnetic forces. In partially ionized plasmas the dynamics of ionized and neutral species are coupled due to ion-neutral collisions. As a consequence, magnetoacoustic waves propagating through a partially ionized medium are affected by the ion-neutral coupling. The degree to which the behavior of the classic waves is modified depends on the physical properties of the various species and on the relative value of the wave frequency compared to the ion-neutral collision frequency. Here, we perform a comprehensive theoretical investigation of magnetoacoustic wave propagation in a partially ionized plasma using the two-fluid formalism. We consider an extensive range of values for the collision frequency, ionization ratio, and plasma eta, so that the results are applicable to a wide variety of astrophysical plasmas. We determine the modification of the wave frequencies and study the frictional damping due to ion-neutral collisions. Approximate analytic expressions to the frequencies are given in the limit case of strongly coupled ions and neutrals, while numerically obtained dispersion diagrams are provided for arbitrary collision frequencies. In addition, we discuss the presence of cutoffs in the dispersion diagrams that constrain wave propagation for certain combinations of parameters. A specific application to propagation of compressible waves in the solar chromosphere is given.

Authors: R. Soler, M. Carbonell, J. L. Ballester
Projects: None

Publication Status: Accepted for publication in ApJ Supplement Series
Last Modified: 2013-10-01 21:52
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