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Evolution of unstable ion acoustic solitons

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1 Author(s)
T. E. Sheridan ; Plasma Res. Lab., Australian Nat. Univ., Canberra, ACT, Australia

The evolution of a localized potential perturbation in a plasma of cold, kinetic ions and Boltzmann electrons is investigated computationally. We find that small perturbations evolve into a train of stable ion acoustic solitons, as predicted by the Korteweg-deVries theory. Large perturbations, however, are found to evolve into solitons that exceed the soliton speed limit. Such solitons are unstable and decay by emitting reflected ion bursts and ion acoustic waves

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Plasma Science  (Volume:27 ,  Issue: 1 )