Journal Article

Fields from a relativistic magnetic explosion

K. N. Gourgouliatos and D. Lynden-Bell

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 391, issue 1, pages 268-282
Published in print November 2008 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online November 2008 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2966.2008.13877.x
Fields from a relativistic magnetic explosion

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Following Prendergast, we study the relativistically expanding electromagnetic fields generated by an axisymmetric explosion of magnetic energy in a small volume. The magnetic field expands uniformly either within a cone or in all directions and it is therefore accompanied by an electric field. In the highly conducting plasma, the charges move to annul the electric field in the frame of the moving plasma. The solutions presented are analytical and semi-analytical. We find that the time-scale for the winding up of the initial magnetic field is crucial, as short time-scales lead to strong radiant fields. Assuming a magnetic field of 1013G emerging from a magnetosphere of 109cm, we end with a jet when confined by a pressure environment that falls more slowly than r−4. The jet carries energy of 1051erg, which is mostly due to differential rotation at the base.

Keywords: stars: magnetic fields; gamma-rays: bursts

Journal Article.  10727 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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