Model experiment of magnetic field amplification in laser-produced plasmas via the Richtmyer-Meshkov instability

Y. Kuramitsu, N. Ohnishi, Y. Sakawa, T. Morita, H. Tanji, T. Ide, K. Nishio, C. D. Gregory, J. N. Waugh, N. Booth, R. Heathcote, C. Murphy, G. Gregori, J. Smallcombe, C. Barton, A. Dizière, M. Koenig, N. Woolsey, Y. Matsumoto, A. MizutaT. Sugiyama, S. Matsukiyo, T. Moritaka, T. Sano, H. Takabe

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A model experiment of magnetic field amplification (MFA) via the Richtmyer-Meshkov instability (RMI) in supernova remnants (SNRs) was performed using a high-power laser. In order to account for very-fast acceleration of cosmic rays observed in SNRs, it is considered that the magnetic field has to be amplified by orders of magnitude from its background level. A possible mechanism for the MFA in SNRs is stretching and mixing of the magnetic field via the RMI when shock waves pass through dense molecular clouds in interstellar media. In order to model the astrophysical phenomenon in laboratories, there are three necessary factors for the RMI to be operative: a shock wave, an external magnetic field, and density inhomogeneity. By irradiating a double-foil target with several laser beams with focal spot displacement under influence of an external magnetic field, shock waves were excited and passed through the density inhomogeneity. Radiative hydrodynamic simulations show that the RMI evolves as the density inhomogeneity is shocked, resulting in higher MFA.

Original languageEnglish
Article number032126
Number of pages6
JournalPhysics of Plasmas
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 30 Mar 2016

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