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Measurements of the dielectric properties of simulated comet material as part of the KOSI 10 experimentThe dielectric constant epsilon of the snow-mineral used for the comet simulation in the German KOSI 10 experiment was measured in the radio frequency range from 2 to 4 GHz. The traditional microwave bridge method was used, but instead of using a waveguide that contains the sample material small lambda/4 antennas were used as sensors. A change in the dielectric properties indicates a change in density and/or composition, respectively. The method is presented as an analytical tool for measuring such density or composition changes during alteration snow-dust materials. The KOSI (determined from the German: Kometen Simulation) experiments, performed in the Space simulator of the DLR/Institut for Raumsimulation, during the last years revealed many processes that presumably take place on comets. So far, modifications of the internal structure could be identified only during the post-experiment inspection via hardness tests. It was the aim of the KOSI 10 and KOSI 10a experiments to emphasize on a synoptic detection of events like particle emission or crust formation. The composition of the KOSI 10 sample material was an ice-mineral mixture with about 10 percent mineral (olivine) content. An excellent method to investigate the change of the density of the probe material during its exposure to the artificial sun in situ is to do it via the measurement of the dielectric constant. The traditional method to determine epsilon, by using a microwave-bridge to measure the transmission and the reflection factor of the sample material for electromagnetic waves in the radio frequency range, was modified, since the commonly used practice to fill the sample material into a waveguide was not compatible with the need for in situ measurements during the simulation experiment.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Ulamec, S.
(European Space Research Organization Noordwikj, Netherlands)
Svedhem, H.
(European Space Research Organization Noordwikj, Netherlands)
Kochan, H.
(Deutsche Forschungsanstalt fuer Luft- und Raumfahrt Cologne, Germany)
Date Acquired
September 6, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1993
Publication Information
Publication: Lunar and Planetary Inst., Twenty-Fourth Lunar and Planetary Science Conference. Part 3: N-Z
Subject Category
Accession Number
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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