Publications by Year: 2014

Čemeljić M, Vlahakis N, Tsinganos K. Large resistivity in numerical simulations of radially self-similar outflows. [Internet]. 2014;442:1133 - 1141. WebsiteAbstract
We investigate the differences between an outflow in a highly resistive accretion disc corona, and the results with smaller or vanishing resistivity. For the first time, we determine conditions at the base of a two-dimensional radially self-similar outflow in the regime of very large resistivity. We performed simulations using the PLUTO magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) code, and found three modes of solutions. The first mode, with small resistivity, is similar to the ideal-MHD solutions. In the second mode, with larger resistivity, the geometry of the magnetic field changes, with a `bulge' above the superfast critical surface. At even larger resistivities, the third mode of solutions sets in, in which the magnetic field is no longer collimated, but is pressed towards the disc. This third mode is also the final one: it does not change with further increase of resistivity. These modes describe topological change in a magnetic field above the accretion disc because of the uniform, constant Ohmic resistivity.
Sapountzis K, Vlahakis N. Rarefaction wave in relativistic steady magnetohydrodynamic flows. [Internet]. 2014;21:072124. WebsiteAbstract
We construct and analyze a model of the relativistic steady-state magnetohydrodynamic rarefaction that is induced when a planar symmetric flow (with one ignorable Cartesian coordinate) propagates under a steep drop of the external pressure profile. Using the method of self-similarity, we derive a system of ordinary differential equations that describe the flow dynamics. In the specific limit of an initially homogeneous flow, we also provide analytical results and accurate scaling laws. We consider that limit as a generalization of the previous Newtonian and hydrodynamic solutions already present in the literature. The model includes magnetic field and bulk flow speed having all components, whose role is explored with a parametric study.
Cayatte V, Vlahakis N, Matsakos T, Lima JJG, Tsinganos K, Sauty C. Counter-rotation in Relativistic Magnetohydrodynamic Jets. [Internet]. 2014;788:L19. WebsiteAbstract
Young stellar object observations suggest that some jets rotate in the opposite direction with respect to their disk. In a recent study, Sauty et al. showed that this does not contradict the magnetocentrifugal mechanism that is believed to launch such outflows. Motion signatures that are transverse to the jet axis, in two opposite directions, have recently been measured in M87. One possible interpretation of this motion is that of counter-rotating knots. Here, we extend our previous analytical derivation of counter-rotation to relativistic jets, demonstrating that counter-rotation can indeed take place under rather general conditions. We show that both the magnetic field and a non-negligible enthalpy are necessary at the origin of counter-rotating outflows, and that the effect is associated with a transfer of energy flux from the matter to the electromagnetic field. This can be realized in three cases: if a decreasing enthalpy causes an increase of the Poynting flux, if the flow decelerates, or if strong gradients of the magnetic field are present. An illustration of the involved mechanism is given by an example of a relativistic magnetohydrodynamic jet simulation.
Stute M, Gracia J, Vlahakis N, Tsinganos K, Mignone A, Massaglia S. 3D simulations of disc winds extending radially self-similar MHD models. [Internet]. 2014;439:3641 - 3648. WebsiteAbstract
Disc winds originating from the inner parts of accretion discs are considered as the basic component of magnetically collimated outflows. The only available analytical magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) solutions to describe disc-driven jets are those characterized by the symmetry of radial self-similarity. However, radially self-similar MHD jet models, in general, have three geometrical shortcomings: (i) a singularity at the jet axis, (ii) the necessary assumption of axisymmetry and (iii) the non-existence of an intrinsic radial scale, i.e. the jets formally extend to radial infinity. Hence, numerical simulations are necessary to extend the analytical solutions towards the axis, by solving the full three-dimensional equations of MHD and impose a termination radius at finite radial distance. We focus here on studying the effects of relaxing the (ii) assumption of axisymmetry, i.e. of performing full 3D numerical simulations of a disc wind crossing all MHD critical surfaces. We compare the results of these runs with previous axisymmetric 2.5D simulations. The structure of the flow in all simulations shows strong similarities. The 3D runs reach a steady state and stay close to axisymmetry for most of the physical quantities, except for the poloidal magnetic field and the toroidal velocity which slightly deviate from axisymmetry. The latter quantities show signs of instabilities, which, however, are confined to the region inside the fast magnetosonic separatrix surface. The forces present in the flow, both of collimating and accelerating nature, are in good agreement in both the 2.5D and the 3D runs. We conclude that the analytical solution behaves well also after relaxing the basic assumption of axisymmetry.
Millas D, Katsoulakos G, Lingri D, Karampelas K, Vlahakis N. Solutions of the Wind Equation in Relativistic Magnetized Jets. In: Vol. 28. ; 2014. pp. 1460200. WebsiteAbstract
We study the bulk acceleration in relativistic axisymmetric magnetized outflows, by solving the momentum equation along the flow, the so-called wind equation. The solutions for the bulk Lorentz factor depend on the geometry of the field/streamlines through the "bunching function" S. We investigate the general characteristics of the S function and how its choice affects the acceleration. In our study, various fast rise and slow decay examples are selected for S, with a global maximum near the fast magnetosonic critical point, as required from the regularity condition. For each case we determine the terminal Lorentz factor γ∞ and the acceleration efficiency γ∞/μ, where μ is the total energy-to-mass flux ratio (which equals the maximum possible Lorentz factor of the outflow). With proper choices of S we can achieve efficiencies greater than 50%. Last, we examine the shape of the field/streamlines with respect to the choice of the S function. The results of this work, depending on the choices of μ, can be applied to relativistic GRB or AGN jets.
Teșileanu O, Matsakos T, Massaglia S, Trussoni E, Mignone A, Vlahakis N, Tsinganos K, Stute M, Cayatte V, Sauty C, et al. Young stellar object jet models: From theory to synthetic observations. [Internet]. 2014;562:A117. WebsiteAbstract
Context. Astronomical observations, analytical solutions, and numerical simulations have provided the building blocks to formulate the current theory of young stellar object jets. Although each approach has made great progress independently, it is only during the past decade that significant efforts have been made to bring the separate pieces together. Aims: Building on previous work that combined analytical solutions and numerical simulations, we apply a sophisticated cooling function to incorporate optically thin energy losses in the dynamics. On one hand, this allows a self-consistent treatment of the jet evolution, and on the other hand, it provides the necessary data to generate synthetic emission maps. Methods: Firstly, analytical disk and stellar outflow solutions are properly combined to initialize numerical two-component jet models inside the computational box. Secondly, magneto-hydrodynamical simulations are performed in 2.5D, correctly following the ionization and recombination of a maximum of 29 ions. Finally, the outputs are post-processed to produce artificial observational data. Results: The values for the density, temperature, and velocity that the simulations provide along the axis are within the typical range of protostellar outflows. Moreover, the synthetic emission maps of the doublets [O i], [N ii], and [S ii] outline a well-collimated and knot-structured jet, which is surrounded by a less dense and slower wind that is not observable in these lines. The jet is found to have a small opening angle and a radius that is also comparable to observations. Conclusions: The first two-component jet simulations, based on analytical models, that include ionization and optically thin radiation losses demonstrate promising results for modeling specific young stellar object outflows. The generation of synthetic emission maps provides the link to observations, as well as the necessary feedback for further improvement of the available models.