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Cylindrical Langmuir probes beyond the orbital-motion-limited regime
Estes, Robert D. and Sanmartín Losada, Juan Ramón
Cylindrical Langmuir probes beyond the orbital-motion-limited regime.
"Physics of plasma", v. 7
The current I to a cylindrical probe at rest in an unmagnetized plasma, with probe bias highly positive, is determined. The way I lags behind the orbital-motion-limited OMLcurrent, 1 OML R, as the radius R exceeds the maximum radius for the OML regime to hold, is of interest for space-tether applications. The ratio I/I OML is roughly a decreasing function of R/lD R max /lDe , which is independent of bias, with lDe the electron Debye length and Rmax /l De roughly an increasing function of the temperature ratio, Ti /Te. The dependence of current on ion energy is used to discuss the effect of probe motion through the plasma, a case applying to tethers in low orbit.
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