H. S. Zhang, Z. Lin, W. Deng, I. Holod, Z. X. Wang, Y. Xiao and W. L. Zhang
Physics of Plasmas 20, 012510 (2013)
The beta-induced Alfvén eigenmode (BAE) excited by energetic particles in toroidal plasmas is studied in the global gyrokinetic simulations. It is found that the nonlinear BAE dynamics depends on the deviation from the marginality. In the strongly driven case, the mode exhibits a bursting state with fast and repetitive chirping. The nonlinear saturation is determined by the thermal ion nonlinearity and has no clear dependence on the linear growth rate. In the weakly driven case, the mode reaches a nearly steady state with small frequency chirping. The nonlinear dynamics is dominated by the energetic particle nonlinearity. In both cases, the nonlinear intensity oscillation and frequency chirping are correlated with the evolution of the coherent structures in the energetic particle phase space. Due to the radial variation of the mode amplitude and the radially asymmetric guiding center dynamics, the wave-particle interaction in the toroidal geometry is much more complex than the conventional one-dimensional wave-particle interaction paradigm.