Atmospheric Cloud Physics Laboratory (ACPL) Optical Motion Control Study.
GENERAL ELECTRIC CO PHILADELPHIA PA SPACE DIV
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The concept of utilizing optical energy radiation pressure to provide motion control and stability for water droplets in the size range applicable to atmospheric cloud physics 5-100 micrometers is investigated. It is shown that the inherent stabilizing forces of a gaussian laser beam TEM00 together with the beams ability to manipulate individual particles makes a powerful tool for studying droplet or ice crystal growth and for initiating relative droplet motion in order to investigate various collisioncoalescence phenomena. The utility of optical motion control OMC will be greatly enhanced with the advent of ShuttleSpacelab payloads such as the Atmospheric Cloud Physics Laboratory ACPL in which the ambient opposing accelerations will be reduced to at least 11000 of that encountered on earth. This future ACPL capability together with current programs for developing shuttle compatible lasers in the 100-200 mW range will make it feasible to consider cloud physics experiments OMC on the earliest flights of the ACPL.
- Atmospheric Physics