Analytical theory of the probability distribution function of structure formation

Johan Anderson, Eun Jin Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


The probability distribution function (PDF) tails of the zonal flow structure formation and the PDF tails of momentum flux are computed by incorporating the effect of a shear flow in ion-temperature-gradient (ITG) turbulence. The bipolar vortex soliton (modon) is assumed to be the coherent structure responsible for bursty and intermittent events driving the PDF tails. It is found that stronger zonal flows are generated in ITG turbulence than Hasegawa-Mima turbulence, as well as further from marginal stability. This suggests that although ITG turbulence has a higher level of heat flux, it also more likely generates stronger zonal flows, leading to a self-regulating system. It is also shown that shear flows can significantly reduce the PDF tails of Reynolds stress and structure formation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number082312
JournalPhysics of Plasmas
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 8 Sept 2008
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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