The effect of the Hall term on the nonlinear evolution of the magnetorotational instability. I. Local axisymmetric simulations

Takayoshi Sano, James McLellan Stone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

143 Scopus citations

Abstract

The effect of the Hall term on the evolution of the magnetorotational instability (MRI) in weakly ionized accretion disks is investigated using local axisymmetric simulations. First, we show that the Hall term has important effects on the MRI when the temperature and density in the disk is below a few thousand K and between 1013 and 1018 cm-3, respectively. Such conditions can occur in the quiescent phase of dwarf nova disks, or in the inner part (inside 10-100 AU) of protoplanetary disks. When the Hall term is important, the properties of the MRI are dependent on the direction of the magnetic field with respect to the angular velocity vector Ω. If the disk is threaded by a uniform vertical field oriented in the same sense as Ω, the axisymmetric evolution of the MRI is an exponentially growing two-channel flow without saturation, When the field is oppositely directed to Ω, however, small scale fluctuations prevent the nonlinear growth of the channel flow and the MRI evolves into MHD turbulence. These results are anticipated from the characteristics of the linear dispersion relation. In axisymmetry on a field with zero-net flux, the evolution of the MRI is independent of the size of the Hall term relative to the inductive term. The evolution in this case is determined mostly by the effect of ohmic dissipation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)314-328
Number of pages15
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume570
Issue number1 I
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

Keywords

  • Accretion, accretion disks
  • Diffusion
  • Instabilities
  • MHD
  • Turbulence

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