Articles | Volume 10, issue 1/2
Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 10, 37–44, 2003
https://doi.org/10.5194/npg-10-37-2003

Special issue: 4th International Workshop on Nonlinear Waves and Chaos in...

Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 10, 37–44, 2003
https://doi.org/10.5194/npg-10-37-2003

  30 Apr 2003

30 Apr 2003

Phase-space holes due to electron and ion beams accelerated by a current-driven potential ramp

M. V. Goldman1, D. L. Newman1, and R. E. Ergun2 M. V. Goldman et al.
  • 1Center for Integrated Plasma Studies, University of Colorado at Boulder, USA
  • 2Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, University of Colorado at Boulder, USA

Abstract. One-dimensional open-boundary simulations have been carried out in a current-carrying plasma seeded with a neutral density depression and with no initial electric field. These simulations show the development of a variety of nonlinear localized electric field structures: double layers (unipolar localized fields), fast electron phase-space holes (bipolar fields) moving in the direction of electrons accelerated by the double layer and trains of slow alternating electron and ion phase-space holes (wave-like fields) moving in the direction of ions accelerated by the double layer. The principal new result in this paper is to show by means of a linear stability analysis that the slow-moving trains of electron and ion holes are likely to be the result of saturation via trapping of a kinetic-Buneman instability driven by the interaction of accelerated ions with unaccelerated electrons.