In situ spacecraft data on the solar wind show events identified as magnetic reconnection with wide outflows and extended "X lines," 103-104 times ion scales. To understand the role of turbulence at these scales, we make a case study of an inertial-range reconnection event in a magnetohydrodynamic simulation. We observe stochastic wandering of field lines in space, breakdown of standard magnetic flux freezing due to Richardson dispersion, and a broadened reconnection zone containing many current sheets. The coarse-grain magnetic geometry is like large-scale reconnection in the solar wind, however, with a hyperbolic flux tube or apparent X line extending over integral length scales.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physics and Astronomy(all)