NORSE: A solver for the relativistic non-linear Fokker-Planck equation for electrons in a homogeneous plasma
Published: 19 November 2016| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/86wmgj758w.1
Energetic electrons are of interest in many types of plasmas, however previous modelling of their properties have been restricted to the use of linear Fokker–Planck collision operators or non-relativistic formulations. Here, we describe a fully non-linear kinetic-equation solver, capable of handling large electric-field strengths (compared to the Dreicer field) and relativistic temperatures. This tool allows modelling of the momentum-space dynamics of the electrons in cases where strong departures from Maxwellian distributions may arise. As an example, we consider electron runaway in magnetic-confinement fusion plasmas and describe a transition to electron slide-away at field strengths significantly lower than previously predicted.