Electron Surfing and Drift Accelerations in a Weibel-Dominated High-Mach-Number Shock.



[ABSTRACT] How electrons get accelerated to relativistic energies in a high-Mach-number quasiperpendicular shock is presented by means of ab initio particle-in-cell simulations in three dimensions. We found that coherent electrostatic Buneman waves and ion-Weibel magnetic turbulence coexist in a strong-shock structure whereby particles gain energy during shock surfing and subsequent stochastic drift accelerations. Energetic electrons that initially experienced the surfing acceleration undergo pitch-angle diffusion by interacting with magnetic turbulence and continuous acceleration during confinement in the shock transition region. The ion-Weibel turbulence is the key to the efficient nonthermal electron acceleration.


  • Physical review letters

    Physical review letters 119 (10), 105101-1-105101-5, 2017-09-08

    American Physical Society

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