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Streamer and zonal flow generation from envelope modulations in drift wave turbulence

Authors
Journal
Physics Letters A
0375-9601
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
288
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/s0375-9601(01)00549-7

Abstract

Abstract The origin of anisotropic secondary flows, such as zonal flows and streamers, in drift wave turbulence is examined. A unified description including diffraction effects is given for zonal flow and streamer generation via envelope modulation of drift-wave packet. Stability boundaries, nonlinear growth rates and typical structure scales are determined for both streamer and zonal flow. A novel result is the determination of the characteristic width of those structures, which is found to depend on intrinsically nonlinear processes.

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