Developing Graphene Foil Technology for Instruments Targeting Low-Energy Ring Current Populations at Earth

Metadata Updated: November 12, 2020

The goal of this proposal is to develop graphene foil technology to the point where these foils can be readily used in energetic neutral atom (ENA) and plasma instruments in space that employ thin carbon foils. The science question targeted by this technology development is "What is the contribution from Coulomb collisions to plasma loss from the Earth's ring current?" Coulomb collisions between ring current ions and thermal populations in the plasmasphere are believed to produce a source of low energy ( 1 cm^2), single crystal graphene foils with controllable thickness (3 - 5 atomic layers). 2. Characterize the properties of large area, single crystal graphene foils and their response to vibrational, thermal, and acoustic stresses. 3. Compare the performance of large area, single crystal graphene and thin carbon foils in a prototype ENA instrument.

The graphene foils used in this project will be produced at Texas State University by Co-I Dr. Qingkai Yu. We will use polymer-assisted transfer of graphene from the copper substrate to electroformed nickel grids. The angular scattering and energy straggling of ions passing through the graphene foils will be measured using existing experimentsin the Ion Calibration Facility at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI). An experiment for measuring secondary electron emission will be built based on a setup built previously by Co-I Allegrini. Testing graphene and thin carbon foil performance in a prototype ENA instrument will be accomplished using an engineering model of the Two Wide-angle Imaging Neutral-atom Spectrometers (TWINS). All facilities, experiments, and instruments are available to this project.

Our proposal directly responds to the NASA-ROSES 2017 H-TIDeS AO by developing technologies to enable the measurement of sub-keV ring current populations at Earth using ENA sensors. This new capability directly supports the science question "How are magnetospheric and ionospheric plasma transported and accelerated by solar wind forcing and magnetosphere-ionosphere coupling?" of the Magnetospheric Energetics, Dynamics, and Ionospheric Coupling (MECIDI) mission concept. MEDICI is a Solar Terrestrial Probes class mission that was recommended for implementation in the 2012 Decadal Strategy for Solar and Space Physics. The technologies developed here will also lead to measurements that respond to two key NASA Heliophysics Science goals, (1) Explore the physical processes in the space environment from the Sun to the Earth and throughout the solar system, and (2) Advance our understanding of the connections that link the Sun, the Earth, planetary space environments, and the outer reaches of our solar system.

Access & Use Information

Public: This dataset is intended for public access and use. License: No license information was provided. If this work was prepared by an officer or employee of the United States government as part of that person's official duties it is considered a U.S. Government Work.

Downloads & Resources


Metadata Created Date November 12, 2020
Metadata Updated Date November 12, 2020

Metadata Source

Harvested from NASA Data.json

Additional Metadata

Resource Type Dataset
Metadata Created Date November 12, 2020
Metadata Updated Date November 12, 2020
Publisher Space Technology Mission Directorate
Unique Identifier Unknown
Identifier TECHPORT_94407
Data First Published 2021-01-01
Data Last Modified 2020-01-29
Public Access Level public
Bureau Code 026:00
Metadata Context
Metadata Catalog ID
Schema Version
Catalog Describedby
Homepage URL
Program Code 026:027
Source Datajson Identifier True
Source Hash 6ee4836fc1055f706dd5b703002a5e2b924fe7ee
Source Schema Version 1.1

Didn't find what you're looking for? Suggest a dataset here.