Electron-ion Temperature Equilibration in Hydrogen Plasmas within the Coupled-mode Regime

  • Apr 10, 2017
  • News, Publications


"Molecular Dynamics Studies of Electron-ion Temperature Equilibration in Hydrogen Plasmas within the Coupled-mode Regime"

Lorin X. Benedict, Michael P. Surh, Liam G. Stanton, Christian R. Scullard, Alfredo A. Correa, John I. Castor, Frank R. Graziani, Lee A. Collins, Ond?ej ?ertík, Joel D. Kress, and Michael S. Murillo

Physical Reviews E 95, 043202 

Link: https://journals.aps.org/pre/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevE.95.043202


We use classical molecular dynamics (MD) to study electron-ion temperature equilibration in two-component plasmas in regimes for which the presence of coupled collective modes has been predicted to substantively reduce the equilibration rate. Guided by previous kinetic theory work, we examine hydrogen plasmas at a density of n = 1026cm^-3,  Ti = 105K, and 107K < Te < 109K. The nonequilibrium classical MD simulations are performed with interparticle interactions modeled by quantum statistical potentials (QSPs). Our MD results indicate (i) a large effect from time-varying potential energy, which we quantify by appealing to an adiabatic two-temperature equation of state, and (ii) a notable deviation in the energy equilibration rate when compared to calculations from classical Lenard-Balescu theory including the QSPs. In particular, it is shown that the energy equilibration rates from MD are more similar to those of the theory when coupled modes are neglected. We suggest possible reasons for this surprising result and propose directions of further research along these lines.