When multiple species interact with an electrostatic ion acoustic wave, they can exchange momentum, despite the lack of momentum in the field itself. The resulting force on the electrons can have a curl, and thus give rise to compensating electric fields with curl on magnetohydrodynamic timescales. As a result, a magnetic field can be generated. Surprisingly, in some astrophysical settings, this mechanism can seed magnetic fields with growth rates even larger than through the traditional Biermann battery.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science