컨텐츠 바로가기
  • Satellite Effects of Space Weather
  • Satellites and spacecrafts
  • Surface Charging

Surface Charging

  • Surface charging to a high voltage does not usually cause immediate problems for a spacecraft. However, electrical discharges resulting from differential charging can damage surface material and create electromagnetic interference that can result in damage to electronic devices. Variations in low energy plasma parameters around the spacecraft, along with the photoelectric effect from sunlight, cause most surface charging. Due to the low energy of the plasma, this type of charging does not penetrate directly into interior components. Surface charging can be largely mitigated through proper materials selection and grounding techniques. Surface charging occurs predominantly during geomagnetic storms. It is usually more severe in the spacecraft local times of midnight to dawn but can occur at any time. Night to day, and day to night transitions are especially problematic during storms since the photoelectric effect is abruptly present or absent, which can trip discharges. Additionally, thruster firings can change the local plasma environment and trigger discharges.

- SWPC -