Wavelet-based coherent vorticity sheet and current sheet extraction from three-dimensional homogeneous magnetohydrodynamic turbulence

Katsunori Yoshimatsu, Yuji Kondo, Kai Schneider, Naoya Okamoto, Hiroyuki Hagiwara, Marie Farge
2009 Physics of Plasmas  
A method for extracting coherent vorticity sheets and current sheets out of three-dimensional homogeneous magnetohydrodynamic ͑MHD͒ turbulence is proposed, which is based on the orthogonal wavelet decomposition of the vorticity and current density fields. Thresholding the wavelet coefficients allows both fields to be split into coherent and incoherent parts. The fields to be analyzed are obtained by direct numerical simulation ͑DNS͒ of forced incompressible MHD turbulence without mean magnetic
more » ... ield, using a classical Fourier spectral method at a resolution of 512 3 . Coherent vorticity sheets and current sheets are extracted from the DNS data at a given time instant. It is found that the coherent vorticity and current density preserve both the vorticity sheets and the current sheets present in the total fields while retaining only a few percent of the degrees of freedom. The incoherent vorticity and current density are shown to be structureless and of mainly dissipative nature. The spectral distributions of kinetic and magnetic energies of the coherent fields only differ in the dissipative range, while the corresponding incoherent fields exhibit near-equipartition of energy. The probability distribution functions of total and coherent fields for both vorticity and current density coincide almost perfectly, while the incoherent fields have strongly reduced variances. Studying the energy flux confirms that the nonlinear dynamics is fully captured by the coherent fields only.
doi:10.1063/1.3195066 fatcat:kcnzhihxzjhgzokzm3hller6zq