Craig, I. J. D. & Fabling, R. B. (1998). Dynamic magnetic reconnection in three space dimensions: Fan current solutions. Physics of Plasmas, 635.
Permanent Research Commons link: http://hdl.handle.net/10289/1271
The problem of incompressible, nonlinear magnetic reconnection in three-dimensional "open" geometries is considered. An analytic treatment shows that dynamic "fan current" reconnection may be driven by superposing long wavelength, finite amplitude, plane wave disturbances onto three-dimensional magnetic X-points. The nonlinear reconnection of the field is preceded by an advection phase in which magnetic shear waves drive large currents as they localize in the vicinity of the magnetic null. Analytic arguments, reinforced by detailed simulations, show that the ohmic dissipation rate can be independent of the plasma resistivity if the merging is suitably driven.
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