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Aerospace Metal Surface Repels Electric Charges - Applications?

  1. Jan 8, 2013 #1
    I came across this piece of news, about how researchers have found a way to repel electric charges away from a surface:


    I was thinking that perhaps it could be useful for more than just particle accelerator experiments. Could it be used to improve Electric Propulsion of spacecraft? If so, then in what ways?

    So this appears to be an area which hasn't gotten much attention before, and so I'm thinking that it might result in new improvements that haven't been previously considered or attempted.

    How could this be used to improve an ion drive, for example? Can it help to improve beam collimation, and reduce grid erosion? Can it improve performance?

    What other things could it improve besides spacecraft propulsion?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 8, 2013 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    Ion drives are basically small particle accelerators.

    I am bit sceptical concerning applications in particle accelerators. The usual bunch geometry is long in the direction of motion (for a lower charge density and other things) and narrow in the other two (to reduce the required beam pipe diameter), exactly the opposite of the geometry described there.
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