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current sheet tearing instability

Kinetic physics effects can be incorporated into global magnetohydrodynamics simulations. An example where MHD and kinetic effects show collective importance is in plasmoid formation, due to a "tearing instability" in the current sheet. The image shows such a process in a resistive MHD simulation: Jz on the top panel, and B^2-E^2 on the bottom panel. Plasmoid-unstable current sheets can be found in black hole accretion disks, black hole jets, and neutron star magnetospheres.

Methods: GRRMHD code BHAC