Journal of Plasma Physics

Research Article

Magnetic field-line reconnexion by localized enhancement of resistivity: Part 1. Evolution in a compressible MHD fluid

Masayuki Ugaia1 and Takao Tsudaa2

a1 Department of Electrical Engineering, Ehime University, Matsuyama, Japan

a2 Department of Electrical Engineering, Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan

The temporal dynamics of field-line reconnexion is studied by numerical experiment in a compressible conducting fluid. It is shown that because of localized enhancement of resistivity the reconnexion takes place in an initially antiparallel magnetic field and that an X-type field configuration develops, occupying an extended region. There is also a remarkable release of magnetic energy into kinetic and thermal energies. The global flow pattern can spontaneously be set up through the field-line reconnexion under no specially imposed boundary conditions.

(Received May 17 1976)

(Revised September 10 1976)