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Scientific journal publication

The influence of probe spacing and probe bias in a double Langmuir probe setup

Kjølerbakken, Kai Morgan; Miloch, Wojciech Jacek; Røed, Ketil

Publication details

Journal: AIP Advances, vol. 11, 085007, 2021

Arkiv: http://hdl.handle.net/10852/86799
Doi: doi.org/10.1063/5.0058540

Multi-needle Langmuir probes are mounted on satellites and sounding rockets for high-frequency characterization of plasma in the ionosphere. Mounted on a spacecraft, the recorded probe current often differs from expected results. In this paper, we perform a numerical study using a particle in cell model to see how the spacing between the individual probes used in a multi-needle setup influences the measured current. We also study how the applied probe bias voltage can contribute to deviations. In our study, we use realistic electron temperatures and electron densities for the relevant part of the ionosphere. However, the results should be generally applicable and valid for other space environments as well as for laboratory Langmuir probe applications. From our study, we can see that when the distance is short, less than two Debye lengths, the current is highly affected, and we can see deviations of more than 60% compared to a single probe setup.