Chemical Enhancements in Shock-Accelerated Particles: Ab initio Simulations

Damiano Caprioli, Dennis T. Yi, Anatoly Spitkovsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


We study the thermalization, injection, and acceleration of ions with different mass/charge ratios, A/Z, in nonrelativistic collisionless shocks via hybrid (kinetic ions-fluid electrons) simulations. In general, ions thermalize to a postshock temperature proportional to A. When diffusive shock acceleration is efficient, ions develop a nonthermal tail whose extent scales with Z and whose normalization is enhanced as (A/Z)2 so that incompletely ionized heavy ions are preferentially accelerated. We discuss how these findings can explain observed heavy-ion enhancements in Galactic cosmic rays.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number171101
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number17
StatePublished - Oct 23 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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