Particle Acceleration and Heating in Magnetosphere Simulations


SNIC 2016/1-401


SNAC Medium

Principal Investigator:

Andris Vaivads


Institutet för rymdfysik

Start Date:


End Date:


Primary Classification:

10303: Fusion, plasma och rymdfysik




This is an application to continue the previous project SNIC 2015/1-332. We carry out global Particle-in-Cell simulations of planetary magnetosphere formation and evolution. We focus on studying particle acceleration and heating in the bow shock region, in planetary magnetosheath and magnetotail. The main scientific question we address is how plasma particles are accelerated and scattered (heated) by shocks and magnetic reconnection in planetary magnetospheres. In addition, we explore the role of turbulence at the bow shock and magnetic reconnection regions. To study these phenomena, we reconstruct particle distribution functions and phase spaces to identify potential acceleration mechanisms. We use the iPIC3D code that has been optimized for running on Beskow. It reached a parallel efficiency of 79% on 32k cores on Beskow. In this project, we plan to use new iPIC3D capabilities such as particle tracking and virtual satellites to compare simulation results with observations from spacecrafts.