Articles | Volume 29, issue 12
23 Dec 2011
 | 23 Dec 2011

Relative ordering in the radial evolution of solar wind turbulence: the S-Theorem approach

G. Consolini and P. De Michelis

Abstract. Over the past few decades scientists have shown growing interest in space plasma complexity and in understanding the turbulence in magnetospheric and interplanetary media. At the beginning of the 1980s, Yu. L. Klimontovich introduced a criterion, named S-Theorem, to evaluate the degree of order in far-from-equilibrium open systems, which applied to hydrodynamic turbulence showed that turbulence flows were more organized than laminar ones. Using the same theorem we have evaluated the variation of the degree of self-organization in both Alfvénic and non-Alfvénic turbulent fluctuations with the radial evolution during a long time interval characterized by a slow solar wind. This analysis seems to show that the radial evolution of turbulent fluctuations is accompanied by a decrease in the degree of order, suggesting that, in the case of slow solar wind, the turbulence decays with radial distance.