Seungsoo Park, Taeil Chung, Jihyun Kim, Byunghyun Ryu, Hyusoung Shin

Design and Validation of a Photoelectric Current Measuring Unit for Lunar Daytime Simulation Chamber

  • Aerospace Engineering

Charging of the lunar surface induced by solar radiation can potentially threaten in situ resource utilization. Associated issues include dust adhesion and material degradation. Photoelectric currents are the primary cause of surface charging. This work reports on the development of a unit capable of measuring photoelectric currents in a vacuum chamber, which can simulate surface charging under conditions similar to those on the moon in daytime. The main components of the unit are a mesh grid, a photocathode specimen, and a ring collector. Photoelectric currents from an aluminum sample were measured by adjusting the electric potential of these components, and the impact of the electric potential of each component is discussed. Calculating the expected electric current within the experimental setup allowed validation of the current measurements: the measured and calculated values agreed well with an error of ~5.5%. Finally, the photoelectric currents for various metals (aluminum, nickel, and copper) were measured using the same experimental setup. The results showed consistent measurement of photoelectric current values across all metals. This study offers insights into the development of units for measuring photoelectric current and methodologies to validate their results.

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