"By considering the mechanics of an electron projected into an arbitrary potential field together with Poisson's equation it is possible to set up a differential equation for the electrostatic potential. The equation may be integrated and the photoelectron density found as a function of height for four approximate models. A simple model based upon monoenergetic photons and monoenergetic electrons ejected vertically upward yields rough estimates of the parameters of interest. Another model takes into account the fact that the photoelectrons are ejected at all angles. A general model takes into account the illumination of the lunar surface by solar (black body) radiation and also the distribution in energy of the electrons ejected for each photon energy. An adiabatic gas model of the photoelectron atmosphere provides an independent check of the results.
Assuming a metalic [sic] surface the electron density is of the order of 104 electrons/cm3 at a half-height of the order of 1.5 cm above the lunar surface. The charge distribution produces an electrostatic force field capable of levitating particles of the order of 10-14 gm"--Abstract, page iii.
Wesley, James Paul
Ph. D. in Physics
United States. National Aeronautics and Space Administration
University of Missouri at Rolla
viii, 86 pages
© 1966 Hal Emerson McCloud, Jr., All rights reserved.
Dissertation - Open Access
Moon -- Atmosphere
Poisson's equation -- Numerical solutions
Print OCLC #
Electronic OCLC #
Link to Catalog Record
McCloud, Hal Emerson Jr., "Theory of the lunar photoelectron atmosphere" (1966). Doctoral Dissertations. 441.