A multiple scales technique is employed to solve the fluid-Maxwell equations describing a weakly nonlinear circularly polarized electromagnetic pulse in magnetized plasma. A nonlinear Schrodinger-type (NLS) equation is shown to govern the amplitude of the vector potential. The conditions for modulational instability and for the existence of various types of localized envelope modes are investigated in terms of relevant parameters. Right-hand circularly polarized (RCP) waves are shown to be modulationally unstable regardless of the value of the ambient magnetic field and propagate as bright-type solitons. The same is true for left-hand circularly polarized (LCP) waves in a weakly to moderately magnetized plasma. In other parameter regions, LCP waves are stable in strongly magnetized plasmas and may propagate as dark-type solitons (electric field holes). The evolution of envelope solitons is analyzed numerically, and it is shown that solitons propagate in magnetized plasma without any essential change in amplitude and shape. (C) 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)