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Electrodynamics effects in beam/return current systems and their implications for solar impulsive bursts

Brown, J. C. and Bingham, R. (1984) Electrodynamics effects in beam/return current systems and their implications for solar impulsive bursts. Astronomy and Astrophysics, 131 (2). L11-L14. ISSN 0004-6361

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Abstract

The electrodynamics of electron beam neutralisation in solar flares is discussed in order to resolve recent controversy over the origin and evolution of the return current. It is demonstrated that return currents are established electrostatically and that the large radii of flare beams imply a resistive time scale so long that inductive effects are negligible along the finite beam length, even for anomalous conductivities. Consequently the commonly used steady state electrostatic (Knight and Sturrock) treatment of return current dissipation in flares is amply justified.