Low frequency electrostatic waves in weakly inhomogeneous magnetoplasma modeled by Lorentzian (kappa) distributions

Basu, B.
April 2008
Physics of Plasmas;Apr2008, Vol. 15 Issue 4, p042108
Academic Journal
Linear dispersion relations for electrostatic waves in spatially inhomogeneous, current-carrying anisotropic plasma, where the equilibrium particle velocity distributions are modeled by various Lorentzian (kappa) distributions and by well-known bi-Maxwellian distribution, are presented. Spatial inhomogeneities, assumed to be weak, include density gradients, temperature gradients, and gradients (shear) in the parallel (to the ambient magnetic field) flow velocities associated with the current. In order to illustrate the distinguishing features of the kappa distributions, stability properties of the low frequency (lower than ion cyclotron frequency) and long perpendicular wavelength (longer than ion gyroradius) modes are studied in detail, and the results are contrasted with those for the bi-Maxwellian distribution. Specific attention is given to the drift waves, the current-driven ion-acoustic waves in the presence of velocity shear, the velocity shear-driven ion-acoustic modes, and the ion temperature-gradient driven modes. Growth rates of the drift wave instability and the current-driven ion-acoustic instability are reduced from their values for bi-Maxwellian distribution due to larger ion Landau damping rates associated with the kappa distributions. For the same reason, excitation conditions for these two instabilities are more stringent in the case of the kappa distributions. Growth rates of the velocity shear-driven ion-acoustic instability and the ion temperature-gradient driven instability are reduced from their values for bi-Maxwellian distribution as a consequence of the reduced adiabatic response of the electrons to the electrostatic potential perturbation. Frequencies of the drift waves and the ion-acoustic waves are also reduced in kappa-distribution plasmas due to the reduced adiabatic response of the electrons.


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