PIC computation of electron current collection to a moving bare tether in the mesothermal condition

Onishi, Tatsuo and Martínez-Sánchez, Manuel and Cooke, David L. and Sanmartín Losada, Juan Ramón (2001). PIC computation of electron current collection to a moving bare tether in the mesothermal condition. In: "27th International Electric Propulsion Conference", 15-19 Oct., Pasadena, California.

Description

Title: PIC computation of electron current collection to a moving bare tether in the mesothermal condition
Author/s:
  • Onishi, Tatsuo
  • Martínez-Sánchez, Manuel
  • Cooke, David L.
  • Sanmartín Losada, Juan Ramón
Item Type: Presentation at Congress or Conference (Article)
Event Title: 27th International Electric Propulsion Conference
Event Dates: 15-19 Oct.
Event Location: Pasadena, California
Title of Book: Proceedings of the 27th IEPC, Oct, 2001, Pasadena, California, USA
Date: 2001
Subjects:
Faculty: E.T.S.I. Aeronáuticos (UPM)
Department: Física Aplicada a la Ingeniería Aeronáutica [hasta 2014]
Creative Commons Licenses: Recognition - No derivative works - Non commercial

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Abstract

In tethered satellite technology, it is important to estimate how many electrons a spacecraft can collect from its ambient plasma by a bare electrodynamic tether. The analysis is however very difficult because of the small but significant Geo-magnetic field and the spacecraft’s relative motion to both ions and electrons. The object of our work is the development of a numerical method, for this purpose. Particle-In-Cell (PIC) method, for the calculation of electron current to a positive bare tether moving at orbital velocity in the ionosphere, i.e. in a flowing magnetized plasma under Maxwellian collisionless conditions. In a PIC code, a number of particles are distributed in phase space and the computational domain has a grid on which Poisson equation is solved for field quantities. The code uses the quasi-neutrality condition to solve for the local potential at points in the plasma which coincide with the computational outside boundary. The quasi-neutrality condition imposes ne - ni on the boundary. The Poisson equation is solved in such a way that the presheath region can be captured in the computation. Results show that the collected current is higher than the Orbital Motion Limit (OML) theory. The OML current is the upper limit of current collection under steady collisionless unmagnetized conditions. In this work, we focus on the flowing effects of plasma as a possible cause of the current enhancement. A deficit electron density due to the flowing effects has been worked and removed by introducing adiabatic electron trapping into our model.

More information

Item ID: 30957
DC Identifier: http://oa.upm.es/30957/
OAI Identifier: oai:oa.upm.es:30957
Deposited by: Biblioteca ETSI Aeronauticos
Deposited on: 17 Sep 2014 08:20
Last Modified: 22 Apr 2016 01:11
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