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2000ApJ...539..505G Generation of the Primordial Magnetic Fields during Cosmological Reionization Nickolay Y. Gnedin, Andrea Ferrara, and Ellen G. Zweibel Received 2000 January 5; accepted 2000 March 29 ABSTRACT We investigate the generation of magnetic fields by the Biermann battery in cosmological ionization fronts, using new simulations of the reionization of the universe by stars in protogalaxies. Two mechanisms are primarily responsible for magnetogenesis: (1) the breakout of ionization fronts from protogalaxies and (2) the propagation of ionization fronts through the high-density neutral filaments that are part of the cosmic web. The first mechanism is dominant prior to overlapping of ionized regions (z ~ 7), whereas the second continues to operate even after that epoch. However, after overlap the field strength increase is largely due to the gas compression occurring as cosmic structures form. As a consequence, the magnetic field at z ~ 5 closely traces the gas density, and it is highly ordered on megaparsec scales. The mean mass-weighted field strength is B_0_ ~ 10^-19^ G in the simulation box. There is a relatively well-defined, nearly linear correlation between B_0_ and the baryonic mass of virialized objects, with B_0_ ~ 10^-18^ G in the most massive objects (M ~ 10^9^ M_sun_) in our simulations. This is a lower limit, as lack of numerical resolution prevents us from following small-scale dynamical processes that could amplify the field in protogalaxies. Although the field strengths we compute are probably adequate as seed fields for a galactic dynamo, the field is too small to have had significant effects on galaxy formation, on thermal conduction, or on cosmic-ray transport in the intergalactic medium. It could, however, be observed in the intergalactic medium through innovative methods based on analysis of {gamma}-ray burst photon arrival times. Subject headings: cosmology: theory-galaxies: formation-intergalactic medium-large-scale structure of universe
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