Utah State University Ground-based Test Facility for Study of Electronic Properties of Spacecraft Materials
Proceedings of the 6th Spacecraft Charging Technology Conference
Materials used for spacecraft and space structures in near-Earth orbit are subject to severe environmental effects including high vacuum conditions, hot and cold extremes temperature, strongly oxidizing atomic oxygen environments, and high fluxes of energetic electrons, ions, neutrals and photons. Instrumentation developed at Utah State University is designed to simulate, at least to some level, all of these conditions and to study charged particle and photon interactions with spacecraft surfaces. The facilities are particularly well suited to study electron emission as related to spacecraft charging, including secondary and backscattered yields, energy-spectra, and angleresolved measurements as a function of incident energy, species, and angle. There are capabilities to determine all parameters required for the NASCAP materials database. Specifically, the chamber provides controlled neutral environments, controlled temperatures, electron fluxes, ion fluxes, photon fluxes, and a wide array of neutral and charged particle and photon detectors. In principle, these capabilities can be used simultaneously, allowing study of synergistic effects. Extensive surface science characterization capabilities are also available to fully characterize the samples in situ. Details of the instrumentation and representative measurements are presented.
W.Y. Chang, JR Dennison, Neal Nickles and R.E. Davies, “Utah State University Ground-based Test Facility for Study of Electronic Properties of Spacecraft Materials,” Proceedings of the 6th Spacecraft Charging Technology Conference, (Air Force Research Laboratory Science Center, Hanscom Air Force Base, MA, 2000).
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