Secondary fast magnetoacoustic waves trapped in randomly structured plasmas

Yuan, D orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-9514-6402, Li, B and Walsh, RW orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-1025-9863 (2016) Secondary fast magnetoacoustic waves trapped in randomly structured plasmas. The Astrophysical Journal, 828 (1). ISSN 0004-637X

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Fast magnetoacoustic wave is an important tool for inferring solar atmospheric parameters. We numerically simulate the propagation of fast wave pulses in randomly structured plasmas mimicking the highly inhomogeneous solar corona. A network of secondary waves is formed by a series of partial reflections and transmissions. These secondary waves exhibit quasi-periodicities in both time and space. Since the temporal and spatial periods are related simply through the fast wave speed, we quantify the properties of secondary waves by examining the dependence of the average temporal period ($\bar{p}$) on the initial pulse width ($w_0$) as well as the density contrast ($\delta_\rho$) and correlation length ($L_c$) that characterize the randomness of the equilibrium density profiles. For small-amplitude pulses, $\delta_\rho$ does not alter $\bar{p}$ significantly. Large-amplitude pulses, on the other hand, enhance the density contrast when $\delta_\rho$ is small but have a smoothing effect when $\delta_\rho$ is sufficiently large. We found that $\bar{p}$ scales linearly with $L_c$ and that the scaling factor is larger for a narrower pulse. However, in terms of the absolute values of $\bar{p}$, broader pulses generate secondary waves with longer periods, and this effect is stronger in random plasmas with shorter correlation lengths. Secondary waves carry the signatures of both the leading wave pulse and background plasma, our study may find applications in MHD seismology by exploiting the secondary waves detected in the dimming regions after CMEs or EUV waves.

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