University of Maryland
Toward a fully kinetic theory of solar wind turbulence
The kinetic theory of turbulence in magnetized plasmas is important for charged particle acceleration in space and laboratory. Charged particle energization is a ubiquitous phenomenon in the universe. It is believed that one of the most important mechanisms is the wave-particle resonant acceleration by plasma turbulence. However, at the present stage, no complete kinetic theory of turbulence in magnetized plasmas exists. This talk will outline an ongoing effort to formulate and solve such a theory. The present effort may contribute toward a resolution of an unsolved problem in coronal and solar wind physics. In the solar wind, there exists an apparent contradiction between the observation and theory. Observation supports cyclotron resonance model while the theory predicts Landau resonance model of the coronal heating and solar wind acceleration. However, the theoretical predictions are based upon MHD or gyrokinetic theory which only provides partial picture of the problem. The full kinetic theory may potentially address this controversy.