A full-particle particle-in-cell (PIC) simulation model is developed to perform fully-kinetic simulations of surface-plasma interactions at the lunar terminator region. This model uses a non-homogeneous immersed-finite-element (IFE) solver to calculate the electric field discontinuity (flux jump) at the plasma-surface interface and surface charging for realistic lunar surface terrain. The simulation includes all plasma species, including the solar wind electrons and ions, as well as photoelectrons with real proton-to-electron mass ratio so the kinetic properties in the mesothermal flow are resolved. We present simulation results of surface charging around a lunar hill at the lunar terminator region.

Meeting Name

53rd AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting (2015: Jan. 5-9, Kissimmee, FL)


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Aerospace engineering; Electric fields; Finite element method; Moon; Plasma interactions; Surface charge; Immersed finite elements; Kinetic properties; Kinetic simulation; Non-homogeneous; Particle-in-cell simulations; Plasma-surface interface; Surface charging; Surface plasma; Plasma simulation

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)


Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version

Accepted Manuscript

File Type





© 2015 Daoru Han and Joseph J. Wang, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jan 2015