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Tank testing of a 2500-cm2 solar panelA 50 cm by 50 cm solar array panel test patch was investigated for spacecraft charging and arcing effects. Bombardment with monochromatic electron was carried out. Some objectives of the test were: (1) to estimate at what voltage of electron bombardment arcing would be probable; (2) to find whether the arc's energy would be tolerable or damagingly large; (3) to try and separate thermal and photoeffects; and, (4) to see whether materials used were such as to minimize arcing. Some conclusions were: In sunlight the tracking data relay satellite's solar panel which has ceria glass on the front and conductive paint on the backside is probably a good design for reducing charge-up. In a geomagnetic substorm simulated in testing there will be arcing at the interconnects during eclipse and transitions into and out of eclipse in testing especially in view of the very cold temperatures that will be reached by this lightweight array. Ceria-doped glass is preferred to fused silica glass for reducing charge build up. The Kapton bare patch should still be conductively painted. The differential voltages on the panel determine when arcing first begins, and the electron beam voltages vary depending upon whether the metallic structure is directly grounded or semifloating.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Legacy CDMS
Document Type
Conference Paper
Bever, R. S.
(NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Staskus, J.
(NASA Lewis Research Center)
Date Acquired
August 10, 2013
Publication Date
October 1, 1981
Publication Information
Publication: NASA. Lewis Research Center Spacecraft Charging Technol., 1980
Subject Category
Spacecraft Design, Testing And Performance
Accession Number
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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