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Open AccessArticle

Magnetic Dissipation in Relativistic Jets

Institute for Theoretical Physics, Goethe University, D-60438 Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía (CSIC), 18080 Granada, Spain
Department of Physics, University of Alabama in Huntsville, Huntsville, AL 35899, USA
Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Gent, B-9000 Gent, Belgium
Department of Physics and Astronomy, The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487, USA
Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies, D-60438 Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Department of Astronomy (IAG-USP), University of São Paulo, São Paulo SP 05508-090, Brazil
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Galaxies 2016, 4(4), 40;
Received: 27 July 2016 / Revised: 22 September 2016 / Accepted: 26 September 2016 / Published: 7 October 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Blazars through Sharp Multi-wavelength Eyes)
The most promising mechanisms for producing and accelerating relativistic jets, and maintaining collimated structure of relativistic jets involve magnetohydrodynamical (MHD) processes. We have investigated the magnetic dissipation mechanism in relativistic jets via relativistic MHD simulations. We found that the relativistic jets involving a helical magnetic field are unstable for the current-driven kink instability, which leads to helically distorted structure in relativistic jets. We identified the regions of high current density in filamentary current sheets, indicative of magnetic reconnection, which are associated to the kink unstable regions and correlated to the converted regions of magnetic to kinetic energies of the jets. We also found that an over-pressured relativistic jet leads to the generation of a series of stationary recollimation shocks and rarefaction structures by the nonlinear interaction of shocks and rarefaction waves. The differences in the recollimation shock structure due to the difference of the magnetic field topologies and strengths may be observable through mm-VLBI observations and space-VLBI mission. View Full-Text
Keywords: galaxies: jets; magnetohydrodynamics (MHD); methods: numerical; instabilities; shock waves galaxies: jets; magnetohydrodynamics (MHD); methods: numerical; instabilities; shock waves
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Mizuno, Y.; Gómez, J.L.; Nishikawa, K.-I.; Meli, A.; Hardee, P.E.; Rezzolla, L.; Singh, C.B.; Pino, E.M.G.D. Magnetic Dissipation in Relativistic Jets. Galaxies 2016, 4, 40.

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