Kinetic Particle Simulations of Plasma Charging and Dust Transport Near Uneven Lunar Surface Terrain


This paper presents a kinetic particle simulation study of the plasma charging and dust transport near the uneven lunar surface terrain. A fully-kinetic 3-D finite-difference (FD) particle-in-cell (PIC) code is utilized to simulate the plasma interaction with uneven surface terrain. The levitation and transport of charged dust grains under the effect of the local photoelectron sheath will be investigated. The profile of quantities of interests, such as electric potential, electric field, solar wind and photoelectron density, and the concentration of charged dust within the photoelectron sheath will be presented.

Meeting Name

AIAA Science and Technology Forum and Exposition, AIAA SciTech Forum 2022


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Second Department

Mathematics and Statistics

Third Department

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering


Session: Spacecraft Charging I - Dust, Plasma, and Arc Inception

This work was partially supported by NASA-Missouri Space Grant Consortium through NASA-EPSCoR-Missouri, as well as NSF through grants DMS-2111039 and CBET-2132655. The simulations presented here were performed with computing resources provided by the Center for High Performance Computing Research at Missouri University of Science and Technology through an NSF grant (OAC-1919789).

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)


Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


File Type





© 2022 The Authors, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

07 Jan 2022