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Modeling Electrostatic Levitation of Dust Particles on Lunar Surface

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3 Author(s)
Wang, J. ; Virginia Polytech. Inst. & State Univ., Blacksburg, VA ; Xiaoming He ; Yong Cao

This paper presents a simulation model on electrostatic levitation of lunar dust particles in the lunar terminator region. Full-particle particle-in-cell simulations are carried out using real ion to electron mass ratio to obtain plasma sheath, surface charging, and the transition point of surface electric field. Test particle simulations are carried out to simulate the levitation of dust particles from lunar surface. Results show that the dust levitation condition in the terminator region is sensitively influenced by the ambient plasma condition and surface charging, and the levitation altitude varies significantly even for small changes of the sun elevation angle.

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Plasma Science, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:36 ,  Issue: 5 )