Charge-2 rocket observations of vehicle charging and charge neutralization

P.M. Banks, B.E. Gilchrist, Torsten Neubert, N. Myers, W.J. Raitt, P.R. Williamson, A.C. Fraser-Smith, S. Sasaki

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


Observations of electrical charging and other phenomena have been made in the ionosphere with the CHARGE-2 tethered rocket system. In this experiment, two electrically connected payloads with a variety of plasma instruments measured effects associated with operation of a 1 keV, 40 mA electron gun and a 450-volt dc power supply. During electron beam operations, it was found that both mother and daughter payloads reached high positive potentials as a consequence of the restricted electron current collecting area of the payloads. During neutral gas thruster firings, the payload potentials were dramatically reduced, indicating that electrical discharges could effectively ground each payload to plasma potential. Other thruster-related effects were also seen, including substantial reductions of return current-associated electrical noise at HF and VLF and large increases in 3914 A light in the plasma sheath.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationActive Experiments/Critical Ionization Velocity
PublisherPergamon Press
Publication date1990
Pages 133-136
ISBN (Print)0-08-040164-3
Publication statusPublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes
EventWorkshop of the Topical Meeting of the Interdisciplinary Commission of the COSPAR 27th Plenary Meeting: Active Experiments/Critical Ionization Velocity - Espoo, Finland
Duration: 18 Jul 198829 Jul 1988
Conference number: 27


WorkshopWorkshop of the Topical Meeting of the Interdisciplinary Commission of the COSPAR 27th Plenary Meeting
SeriesAdvances in Space Research


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