4 May 2012 Optimization of the concentration optics of the Martian airborne dust sensor for MetNet space mission
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Abstract
Martian atmosphere contains a significant and rapidly changing load of suspended dust that never drops to zero. The main component of Martian aerosol is micron-sized dust thought to be a product of soil weathering. Although airborne dust plays a key role in Martian climate, the basic physical properties of these aerosols are still poorly known. The scope of Mars MetNet Mission is to deploy several tens of mini atmospheric stations on the Martian surface. MEIGA-MetNet payload is the Spanish contribution in MetNet. Infrared Laboratory of University Carlos III (LIR-UC3M) is in charge of the design and development of a micro-sensor for the characterization of airborne dust. This design must accomplish with a strict budget of mass and power, 45 g and 1 W respectively. The sensor design criteria have been obtained from a physical model specifically developed for optimizing IR local scattering. The model calculates the spectral power density scattered and detected between 1 and 5 μm by a certain particle distribution and sensor configuration. From model calculations a modification based on the insertion of a compound ellipsoidal concentrator (CEC) has appeared as necessary. Its implementation has multiplied up to 100 the scattered optical power detected, significantly enhancing the detection limits of the sensor.
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F. Cortés, F. Cortés, A. González, A. González, A. J. de Castro, A. J. de Castro, F. López, F. López, } "Optimization of the concentration optics of the Martian airborne dust sensor for MetNet space mission", Proc. SPIE 8429, Optical Modelling and Design II, 84291K (4 May 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.922342; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.922342
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