Plasma Physics Seminar ( Phys 769)

Dr. Vyacheslav Lukin, Naval Research Laboratory
Computational Fluid Modeling of Magnetized Plasmas in Laboratory and Space

It is well-known that 99% of visible matter is a plasma. And much of that, from the UMD's MCX experiment to the intergalactic medium, is a magnetized plasma. In recent years, fueled by the rapid advances in computational hardware and improved numerical methods, progress in theoretical understanding of magnetized plasmas has relied heavily on computational modeling. Here, I will discuss one of the common computational approaches to tracking the dynamics of a magnetized plasma, /ab initio/ solution of extended magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) equations, while using some of the latest numerical techniques developed by the applied mathematics community. I will describe the numerical code we use to model MHD plasma dynamics, the two- and three-dimensional implicit spectral element code HiFi, and some of the methods and underlying principles used in the development of the code. Finally, I will provide several examples of the past and ongoing applications of the HiFi code to modeling of both laboratory and space plasmas.

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