Accession Number:

ADA256182

Title:

A Proposed Gas Release Experiment on the ARGOS Satellite

Descriptive Note:

Interim rept.

Corporate Author:

PHILLIPS LAB HANSCOM AFB MA

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1992-01-29

Pagination or Media Count:

41.0

Abstract:

Release of xenon and carbon dioxide gases from nozzles on the Advanced Research and Global Observation Satellite ARGOS orbiting with a velocity of about 7.4 kms at an altitude of about 800 km is proposed. The releases will be conducted mostly in darkness over the Maui telescope site. The vector sum of the satellite and gas velocities will exceed the velocity requirement for the critical ionization velocity CIV process of xenon. It is feasible that the xenon gas will achieve critical velocity ionization. Associative ionization and collisional stripping will not occur for the xenon gas and there is no photo-ionization in darkness ionization processes competing with CIV are absent. Neutral density, ambient magnetic field, and seed ionization effects on the xenon gas CIV will be discussed. Unlike xenon, carbon dioxide will not undergo CIV because of its higher velocity requirement. However, it is feasible that carbon dioxide colliding with the atmospheric species will form excited CO and OH molecules, which will radiate subsequently. Optical, IR, and UV observations on the satellite and at Maui will provide diagnostic measurements for the experiment.

Subject Categories:

  • Plasma Physics and Magnetohydrodynamics
  • Unmanned Spacecraft

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE