11 July 2016 Gamma ray spectrometer for future Mars mission: design concept and simulation study
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Abstract
One of the basic keys to understand the evolution and formation of any planet is the knowledge of the elemental composition of its surface. Gamma spectroscopy on Mars orbiter provides a unique opportunity to measure the elemental composition of its surface, with an atmosphere thin enough to allow detection of gamma rays produced from the near surface rock and soil materials. We are developing gamma ray spectrometer using High Purity Germanium (HPGe) detector for future Mars orbiter mission. The scientific objective of the instrument is to map the naturally occurring radioactive elements (Th, U, and K) and other major elements (Fe, Mg, Cl, Al, Si, S, Mg, Cl) over the entire Martian surface with a spatial resolution of better than 250 km. Gamma ray spectrometer will also have Anti - Coincidence Shield (ACS) detector for background subtraction from the surrounding material. This paper gives the details of the GEANT4 simulation, carried out to study the design requirements for a gamma ray spectrometer for a future Mars orbiter mission. This includes the selection of the size of HPGe detector, selection of the detector material and thickness for the ACS detector, and attenuation of gamma rays in the Martian atmosphere. Generation of gamma rays from the Martian surface due to Galactic Cosmic Rays (GCR) particles' interaction has also been simulated. Preliminary results from the standard off the shelf detector are also presented here.
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S. K. Goyal, S. K. Goyal, D. Banerjee, D. Banerjee, S. Vadawale, S. Vadawale, Dipak K. Panda, Dipak K. Panda, A. R. Patel, A. R. Patel, A. Patinge, A. Patinge, T. Ladiya, T. Ladiya, A. Basu Sarbadhikari, A. Basu Sarbadhikari, "Gamma ray spectrometer for future Mars mission: design concept and simulation study", Proc. SPIE 9905, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2016: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray, 99056G (11 July 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2232425; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2232425
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