Energy conservation and the chiral magnetic effect

Energy conservation and the chiral magnetic effect We analyze the chiral magnetic effect in a homogeneous neutral plasma from the point of view of energy conservation, and construct an effective potential for the growth of maximally helical perturbations of the electromagnetic field. We show that a negative curvature at the origin of the potential, indicating instability of the plasma, is induced by a chiral asymmetry in electron Fermi energy, as opposed to number density, while the potential grows at large field value. It follows that the ground state for a plasma has zero magnetic helicity; a nonzero electron mass will allow an excited state of a plasma with nonzero helicity to relax to that ground state quickly. We conclude that a chiral plasma instability triggered by weak interactions is not a viable mechanism for explaining magnetic fields in stars except possibly when dynamics drives the system far from equilibrium. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Physical Review D American Physical Society (APS)

Energy conservation and the chiral magnetic effect

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Energy conservation and the chiral magnetic effect

Abstract

We analyze the chiral magnetic effect in a homogeneous neutral plasma from the point of view of energy conservation, and construct an effective potential for the growth of maximally helical perturbations of the electromagnetic field. We show that a negative curvature at the origin of the potential, indicating instability of the plasma, is induced by a chiral asymmetry in electron Fermi energy, as opposed to number density, while the potential grows at large field value. It follows that the ground state for a plasma has zero magnetic helicity; a nonzero electron mass will allow an excited state of a plasma with nonzero helicity to relax to that ground state quickly. We conclude that a chiral plasma instability triggered by weak interactions is not a viable mechanism for explaining magnetic fields in stars except possibly when dynamics drives the system far from equilibrium.
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Publisher
The American Physical Society
Copyright
Copyright © © 2017 American Physical Society
ISSN
1550-7998
eISSN
1550-2368
D.O.I.
10.1103/PhysRevD.96.016008
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

We analyze the chiral magnetic effect in a homogeneous neutral plasma from the point of view of energy conservation, and construct an effective potential for the growth of maximally helical perturbations of the electromagnetic field. We show that a negative curvature at the origin of the potential, indicating instability of the plasma, is induced by a chiral asymmetry in electron Fermi energy, as opposed to number density, while the potential grows at large field value. It follows that the ground state for a plasma has zero magnetic helicity; a nonzero electron mass will allow an excited state of a plasma with nonzero helicity to relax to that ground state quickly. We conclude that a chiral plasma instability triggered by weak interactions is not a viable mechanism for explaining magnetic fields in stars except possibly when dynamics drives the system far from equilibrium.

Journal

Physical Review DAmerican Physical Society (APS)

Published: Jul 1, 2017

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