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Journal Articles Physical Review E Year : 2022

Marginally stable current sheets in collisionless magnetic reconnection

D. Borgogno
  • Function : Author
L. Comisso
  • Function : Author
D. Grasso
  • Function : Author
R. Numata
  • Function : Author


Noncollisional current sheets that form during the nonlinear development of spontaneous magnetic reconnection are characterized by a small thickness, of the order of the electron skin depth. They can become unstable to the formation of plasmoids, which allows the magnetic reconnection process to reach high reconnection rates. In this work, we investigate the marginal stability conditions for the development of plasmoids when the forming current sheet is purely collisionless and in the presence of a strong guide field. We analyze the geometry that characterizes the reconnecting current sheet, and what promotes its elongation. Once the reconnecting current sheet is formed, we identify the regimes for which it is plasmoid unstable. Our study shows that plasmoids can be obtained, in this context, from current sheets with an aspect ratio much smaller than in the collisional regime, and that the plasma flow channel of the marginally stable current layers maintains an inverse aspect ratio of 0.1.

Dates and versions

insu-03869673 , version 1 (24-11-2022)



C. Granier, D. Borgogno, L. Comisso, D. Grasso, E. Tassi, et al.. Marginally stable current sheets in collisionless magnetic reconnection. Physical Review E, 2022, 106, ⟨10.1103/PhysRevE.106.L043201⟩. ⟨insu-03869673⟩
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