Role of trapped and nonthermal electron distributions in dust charging currents

Duha, S. S.
December 2009
Physics of Plasmas;Dec2009, Vol. 16 Issue 12, p123703
Academic Journal
The expressions for the dust charging current associated with plasma electrons, which follow either the trapped (vortexlike) distribution of Schamel [J. Plasma Phys. 13, 139 (1975)] or the nonthermal distribution of Cairns et al. [Geophys. Res. Lett. 22, 2709 (1995)], are derived. The effects of such trapped and nonthermal distributions of electrons on this dust charging current are then theoretically examined, and using current equations we derived dust grain charge. It is found that the dust charging currents are significantly modified by the population of the trapped and nonthermal electrons, and the dust grain charge is also modified. The implications of our results in the dust charging mechanism, which is the central point of the physics of dusty plasmas, are briefly discussed.


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