Magnetic tower outflows from a radial wire array Z-pinch

S. V. Lebedev*, A. Ciardi, D. J. Ampleford, S. N. Bland, S. C. Bott, J. P. Chittenden, G. N. Hall, J. Rapley, C. A. Jennings, A. Frank, E. G. Blackman, Thibaut Lery

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    126 Scopus citations

    Abstract

    We present the first results of high energy density laboratory astrophysics experiments which explore the evolution of collimated outflows and jets driven by a toroidal magnetic field. The experiments are scalable to astrophysical flows in that critical dimensionless numbers such as the Mach number, the plasma β and the magnetic Reynolds number are all in the astrophysically appropriate ranges. Our experiments use the MAGPIE pulsed power machine and allow us to explore the role of magnetic pressure in creating and collimating the outflow as well as showing the creation of a central jet within the broader outflow cavity. We show that currents flow along this jet and we observe its collimation to be enhanced by the additional hoop stresses associated with the generated toroidal field. Although at later times the jet column is observed to go unstable, the jet retains its collimation. We also present simulations of the magnetic jet evolution using our two-dimensional resistive magnetohydrodynamic laboratory code. We conclude with a discussion of the astrophysical relevance of the experiments and of the stability properties of the jet.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)97-108
    Number of pages12
    JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
    Volume361
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jul 21 2005

    Keywords

    • Accretion, accretion discs
    • MHD
    • Methods: laboratory
    • Plasmas
    • Stars: winds, outflows

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Astronomy and Astrophysics
    • Space and Planetary Science

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