The saturation level of the magnetorotational instability (MRI) is investigated using three-dimensional MHD simulations. The shearing box approximation is adopted and the vertical component of gravity is ignored, so that the evolution of the MRI is followed in a small local part of the disk. We focus on the dependence of the saturation level of the stress on the gas pressure, which is a key assumption in the standard a disk model. Prom our numerical experiments it is found that there is a weak power-law relation between the saturation level of the Maxwell stress and the gas pressure in the nonlinear regime; the higher the gas pressure, the larger the stress. Our numerical results are qualitatively consistent with an idea that the saturation level of the MRI is determined by a balance between the growth of the MRI and the dissipation of the field through reconnection.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)